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Manchester United related news & links: on the eve of Chelsea FC

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has avoided punishment from the FA following his elbow to Wigan's James McCarthy this past Saturday at the DW Stadium. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has avoided punishment from the FA following his elbow to Wigan's James McCarthy this past Saturday at the DW Stadium. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
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On the eve of the match versus Chelsea FC at Stamford Bridge, here are some Mancheser United related news links. This should get you caught up to the general happenings of the club prior to Tuesday evening's tie. 

* The biggest news is probably that Wayne Rooney escaped punishment for his elbow to Wigan Athletics's James McCarthy at the DW Stadium  on Saturday. ESPN Soccernet provides some quotes. My guess is that best thing that happened to Rooney and MUFC is that referee Mark Clattenburg saw the incident and awarded Wigan a free kick... and with no booking. Had Clattenburg let the incident go during the game because he didn't see it, I could see the FA retroactively giving Rooney a three-match ban. Clattenburg's post-match report was likely vital. What's he going to say??? Yes, I saw the incident and it was worthy of a three-match ban but I still only awarded Wigan a free kick.... Clattenburg of course was going downplay the incident in the post-match review. 

Ashley Cole shot an intern with an air-rifle according to this ESPN Soccernet report... It wasn't from 12 yards out so the Chelsea left-back actually hit the target. He'll be good to go though for tomorrow evening's game and won't be suspended for the clash. The police are reviewing the incident. The intern, 21 year-old Tom Cowan, is fine. 

More links after the jump... 

* Sir Alex Ferguson suggests that John Terry is a clueless numpty  (ESPN Soccernet) for his remarks that United could collapse from the pressure of the title race. Okay, those weren't Fergie's exact words, it's just how I interpreted them. 

Fergie still has faith in Jonny Evans per ESPN Soccernet, despite the recent struggles from the Northern Ireland international. The United boss potentially sees Chris Smalling and Evans pairing as the future center-back pairing for the Reds.

* If you only read one of these links, read this one. From the GuardianRyan Giggs candidly reflects on his 20 years with Manchester United. There are some fantastic quotes there. The Welshman can equal Sir Bobby Charlton's record for 606 league appearances if he's featured tomorrow at Stamford Bridge. 

* A list of the 131 teammates that Ryan Giggs has played with over his 20 years, per the Guardian.

* Kevin McCarra of the Guardian says that United galvanizes the Blues.

* A 10-question football quiz on past Manchester United v Chelsea clashes from the Guardian. No, I won't tell you my score.... and yes, it is not polite to ask. 

* Per the Guardian once more, Rio Ferdinand says the Chelsea signings won't pay much dividends until next year.

* The Manchester Evening News says Javier 'Chicharito' Hernadez is happy with his role at the club. 

* Much too much has been made in the past about Nemanja Vidic's so-called struggles with Fernando Torres. However, the Manchester Evening News has quotes from Vidic saying he's ready for Torres.

* Former United midfielder Paul Ince condemns some modern football trends per the BBC. He hates snoods and headphones. Ince says footballers will be wearing skirts soon enough. This writer nods approvingly to much of what Ince said. 

* From the terrific and always funny blog, Dirty Tackle, it presents to you "Dimitar Berbatov is... The Continental". Well hello there...