Date: 6th March 2008 at 11:44am
Written by:

Some changes are required for the United game, too many players have failed to perform for too long, so do need to be taken out but as mentioned by many wholesale changes is probably too risky against a team like United? at the same time barely minimal changes could prove just as much our undoing?

Harry Redknapp will be forced into at least one change from the defeat to Everton last weekend as Jermain Defoe is cup tied, and after his words in defence of John Utaka to The News it looks as though he might get the nod: ‘there’s every chance for John to come back in and be involved at Manchester United.

‘We are going to need some performances from him between now and the end of the season.

‘He has all the ability in the world and can be what he wants to be.

‘He can finish terrifically. You’d take John to score when he goes through.

‘He has done that on a couple of occasions for us this season.

‘John has fantastic ability so it’s up to him to put it to use. He has to use it.’

Should he come back in it will be as part of the 4-3-3/4-5-1 formation used to such success earlier in the season. Should he play, and should we see the best of Utaka then he ‘could’ be the match winner – the problem is we have not seen the best of Utaka for several months?

Kanu looks likely to lead the line, so Utaka could take a place on the right, but his defensive frailties are a concern though, so Lauren could be an option, the problem is he offers little or nothing going forward and this has not worked so far for me, so if used Glen Johnson in front of him would have to be the way to go surely?

Just a thought, and although probably not too likely, what about Utaka playing the lone role with Lauren and Johnson occupying the right – ideally with Johnson pushed further forward?

I am not overlooking Milan Baros, but it is unlikely that both he and Utaka will return in the same game. Clearly Utaka does not have the hold up play that Kanu does but at least he has the mobility and pace that could trouble United – which could prove more of a threat? By not using him on the right we would not be exposing this weakness either?

Whatever happens if we go to Old Trafford looking to just get a draw we will lose, if we go to Old Trafford looking to go all out to win, again we will lose. Patience is the key, as is not showing them too much respect. Chances will be few and far between but we have to ask questions, for me if we are to do that we need some mobility and pace up front.

PLAY UP POMPEY!

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