Saturday 13 April 2013
With his side hovering just three points above the relegation zone Stoke City manager Tony Pulis is keen to arrest a disappointing sequence of results, but if recent history is anything to go by, a home win over Manchester United represents a tall order.
"Pitting your wits against Sir Alex and playing Manchester United is just fantastic for this football club"
Stoke have yet to beat United during their five seasons in the Barclays Premier League, having lost eight of their nine top-flight encounters with Sir Alex Ferguson’s side since 2008, although they can take some comfort from last season’s meeting at the Britannia Stadium, where they held the Red Devils to a 1-1 draw as Peter Crouch cancelled out Nani’s opening goal.
While United are flying high 12 points clear at the top of the division, Stoke’s sequence of one victory in 13 matches has dropped them into a relegation struggle, but Pulis is not shirking from the challenge. “It’s a game that we look forward to,” he said in the pre-match press conference. “It’s one of the reasons everyone gets excited about being in the Premier League. Pitting your wits against Sir Alex and playing Manchester United is just fantastic for this football club.”
Pulis can also take solace from United’s own blip. High-flying they may be but Ferguson’s side are looking to bounce back from three consecutive defeats in all competitions.
Stoke wins: 0; Man Utd wins: 8; Draws: 1.
Stoke: 5; Man Utd: 23.
Click on the fixtures for scorers, line-ups and selected stats
24 Sep 2011 Stoke 1-1 Man Utd
24 Oct 2010 Stoke 1-2 Man Utd
26 Sep 2009 Stoke 0-2 Man Utd
26 Dec 2008 Stoke 0-1 Man Utd
20 Oct 2012 Man Utd 4-1 Stoke
31 Jan 2012 Man Utd 2-0 Stoke
4 Jan 2011 Man Utd 2-1 Stoke
9 May 2010 Man Utd 4-0 Stoke
15 Nov 2008 Man Utd 5-0 Stoke