Newcastle manager Kevin Keegan has made two changes to the side which was beaten at Aston Villa two weeks ago, as Abdoulaye Faye Faye comes in for Claudio Cacapa at center-back and Charles N’Zogbia returns to the team.
Senegal defender Faye starts his first game since his his return from the African Cup of Nations while Cameroon midfielder Geremi returns to the bench.
Stephen Carr (hamstring), Emre (calf) and Oba Martins (ankle) are all injured and it looks like Charles will start at left back. Spaniard Jose Enrique is not even on the bench today.
Shay Given comes back in goal after recovering from his groin strain and Steve Harper returns to the bench on 99 appearances for Newcastle. Duff and Milner will start on the wings.
That means both Smith and Butt maintain their places, even after lack-luster performances the last few games. Andy Carroll and Shola Ameobi are on the the belch, which shows Keegan wants to attack the Red Devils today. Surprisingly Mark Viduka is not even among the substitutes.
Manchester United are without Ryan Giggs but start in a 4-3-3 formation with Ronaldo, Rooney and Tevez up front.
Wallsend born Michael Carrick starts for Manchester United in midfield.
Newcastle United: Shay Given, Habib Beye, Charles N’Zogbia, Abdoulaye Faye, Steven Taylor, Joey Barton, Nicky Butt, James Milner, Damien Duff, Alan Smith, Michael Owen (c)
Subs: Claudio Cacapa, Steve Harper, Andy Carroll, Shola Ameobi, Geremi
Manchester United: Edwin Van Der Sar, Patrice Evra, Rio Ferdinand (c), Wes Brown, Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney, Nemanja Vidic, Michael Carrick, Nani, Darren Fletcher, Carlos Tevez
Subs: Anderson, Louis Saha, Paul Scholes, John O’Shea, Tomasz Kusczak
Referee: Chris Foy