Pallister Tips Boro To Shock Man Utd!

Last updated : 02 May 2009 By Boro Mad
Gary Pallister: "I was at the Porto game when they came to Old Trafford and they were the team that everyone expected to be the whipping boys of the last eight.
"But they came out of the traps like you wouldn't believe because the manager of Porto felt that United would be tired and for 30 minutes they took the game to United on their own patch and really, really upset them.
"That's something Gareth can look at. Their manager thought if we can catch them cold and start at a fast tempo we can knock them out of their strides and maybe Gareth can get that into the players' minds and start like that against Manchester United.
"You can't change the whole team around so there will be a few tired legs out there in the United team plus you never know what to expect when a team has a few changes.
"So if you can unsettle them right from the off it might give us the chance to get an early lead and give us something to hold on to.
"United are so up and down at the moment. In the first half especially at the back, against Aston Villa they were all at sea again and they had been for a number of weeks until Rio came back. But then Rio had one of his worst games of the season, especially in the first half.
"They have the ability but at times they have looked a bit jaded over the last two months. They'll have had a tough game against Arsenal on the Wednesday and then it's an early kick off.
"I know the manager will be concerned about the players and how they feel after the game so he will probably change things around for the Middlesbrough game and sometimes that can spoil the rhythm of the team. If we can catch them on a day when they are not playing so well then anything can happen as we have found out in the past.
"Our game is sandwiched in between the Champions League games so knowing the way Alex Ferguson operates then I am sure he will mix it up come the game at the Riverside because he feels as thought he has games and points in hand with the Liverpool challenge and maybe leave a few of the big guns out.
"It's probably one of the better times to be playing Man United but lets not forget they have such great quality in depth within the squad that whoever comes in is still going to be a formidable player.
"I know the manager took a lot of stick because of the Everton game at Wembley but they were still the better team against Everton who were sixth in the Premier League. It's not a case of it will be easier because there is so much quality in their ranks."