Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson just held his pre-match press conference for Sunday's match against Liverpool and during it, he revealed that Nani and Anderson could be ready for the derby but he indicated that Wayne Rooney is likely out. Here's the general update the gaffer provided:
"I'm hoping Wayne will start training today actually, in which case he won't be far away. I don't think it's a big issue but it will help him along. The injury is quite straightforward so if he starts today we should have him available for Wednesday's game. Nani's back in training and will be in the squad on Sunday. Phil Jones is back, although I think Wednesday is more likely for him. Anderson has been back training for 10 days so he'll be in the squad on Sunday. All in all, we're in a healthy situation. How long it will last I don't know, but it's good to have them back. It's a derby game - it's intense, emotional. Everything you can think of in a derby game will be there on Sunday. We go into the game in reasonable form."
That's actually pretty solid news as that pretty much addresses the injuries in the squad at the current moment. None of Nani, Anderson, nor Rooney are likely to start -- although we wouldn't put it past the stealth Ferguson -- but it is good to know that the manager has an array of options. For the most part, his selection choices are relatively straight-forward -- perhaps the toughest choices are Robin van Persie's partner up front and the first-choice centre-back pairing.
Up front, expect RvP to start alongside either Javier Hernandez (Chicharito) or Shinji Kagawa. Out wide, Antonio Valencia -- despite his unconvincing form as of late -- is probable on the right while either Ashley Young or Ryan Giggs is expected on the left. Michael Carrick seems to be a guarantee in central-midfield and he could be partnered by either Tom Cleverley or Paul Scholes. The expected back four is Rio Ferdinand, Jonny Evans, Rafael, and Patrice Evra ahead of David de Gea in goal. Perhaps Nani will have a substitute's impact in this always tense affair...