Sunderland’s Richardson keen to avenge Man United memory

Kieran Richardson
Kieran Richardson
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KIERAN Richardson is desperate to avenge his only previous visit to Old Trafford as Sunderland bid to be party poopers this weekend.

Injuries have limited Richardson to a solitary outing at Manchester United since joining Sunderland from the Red Devils in 2007.

The October, 2009, encounter was an unhappy return to the Theatre of Dreams for Richardson after his late red card – following a second yellow card for kicking the ball away – cost Sunderland the chance of a first Old Trafford win since 1968.

Sunderland’s 10 men could not survive United’s late onslaught, with Anton Ferdinand’s injury-time own goal earning the hosts a 2-2 draw.

Left-back Richardson (pictured) hopes for better fortune on Saturday as Sunderland look to disrupt Sir Alex Ferguson’s 25th year anniversary, with a second successive away victory.

Richardson told the Echo: “Injuries have meant I have only played at Old Trafford once since I left, but going back to Manchester United is a big event for me.

“I played there the season before last with Sunderland and I got sent off which isn’t such a great memory!

“I won’t make the same mistake again because it is hard enough to play against United with 11 men, never mind 10.

“We know that going to Manchester United will be a hard test for us, but we’ll go there and give it a go. We’ve been to Old Trafford before and taken something from the game and that’s what we’ll be aiming to do again.”

Sunderland are the first Premier League outfit to visit Old Trafford since Ferguson’s men suffered a 6-1 derby thrashing at the hands of Manchester City, 10 days ago.

But Richardson still expects United, who host Otelul Galati in the Champions League tonight, to prevail in the title race.

The 27-year-old said: “City look very strong and I think they can sustain a title challenge this season. They’ve got a great squad, but when you’ve got all the money in the world, you should have a great squad and be challenging for the title.

“I have to say though, I still fancy Man United to win the league. They’ve got the history and they’ve got the players who have been there and done it.

“I’m sure that at the end of the season they will be there at the top or thereabouts.”

Richardson added: “It’s just our luck to be the first team to go to Old Trafford after the Man City game.

“I watched that game on TV and Man City gave United a hiding, although I’m sure United will bounce back.

“City played very well and they deserve a lot of credit, but the game changed when Jonny Evans was sent off.

“The players know how much the derby means to the fans and the club. They know that to lose – and lose like that – is heart-rending for anyone.

“We know how it feels to lose heavily in a derby because it happened to us last season at Newcastle.But Sir Alex Ferguson is a great manager and he knows how to get a response from his players so we will have to be aware of that.”