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Jon Riley 22nd Dec 2012 - 15:27

Swans on the menu for Christmas dinner?

Swansea v Manchester United

13:30 - live on Sky Sports 1

It is well known that under Sir Alex Ferguson, Man Utd tend to come alive after Christmas, usually embarking on winning runs that fuel their title challenges come May. Therefore it must be worrying for United's Premier League rivals that a victory against Swansea will see Fergie's men tucking into their turkey six points clear at the top of the table.

Surprisingly it's only the eighth time United have been the Christmas number one under Sir Alex and while they may currently sit on top of the tree, a trip to Swansea is not a guaranteed three points by any means.

Consecutive defeats may have clipped the Swans' wings recently but they are still enjoying an excellent second season in the top flight, Michael Laudrup's men are already five points better off than last year and a League Cup semi-final on the horizon.

Historically Swansea can boast a terrific record against United, in fact the visitors' 1-0 win here last season was their first ever victory away to the Welsh side (W1, D2, L6).

That record will count for little though when the two teams clash on Sunday. In-form United have won their last five matches, including a huge victory over rivals City at the Etihad a fortnight ago.

On the injury front Nemanja Vidic is in contention to start after the Serbian made a brief cameo appearance against Sunderland, but Rafael will again miss out with a hamstring strain. Sir Alex is still without midfielders Nani and Shinji Kagawa, who returns to first-team training on Monday. The Swans are hoping to welcome Michel Vorm after an eight week lay-off, while Pablo Hernandez and Angel Rangel could also make their returns.

Goals have not been a problem for United in recent times with Wayne Rooney (First scorer 9/2, anytime 6/5) and Robin Van Persie (First scorer 7/2, anytime 10/11) holding their very own Golden Boot competition. After signing from rivals Arsenal in the summer, Van Persie has more than justified his hefty price-tag, weighing in with twelve league goals already while Rooney, after a slow start to the campaign, has quickly accrued seven goals.

Level on goals though at the top of the goal scorers table is Swansea's very own summer signing Michu (First scorer 13/2, anytime 15/8). The Spaniard has fitted in Michael Ludrup's system expertly and his style and willingness to work, not just his goals, have endeared him to the Liberty Stadium faithful.

Match betting
Swansea 4/1 Draw 13/5 Man Utd 7/10
Headline Offers
Robin van Persie to score and Man Utd to win 2/1
Michu to score and Swansea to win 8/1
Correct Score
Swansea 2-1 14/1, 1-0 16/1, 2-0 28/1
Draw 1-1 8/1, 0-0 16/1, 2-2 14/1
Man Utd 2-1 7/1, 1-0 9/1, 2-0 9/1
Match Handicap
Swansea +1 23/20
Man Utd-1 8/5

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