Manchester United vs. Shakhtar Donetsk: Critical Last-Minute Info for UCL Clash

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Manchester United vs. Shakhtar Donetsk: Critical Last-Minute Info for UCL Clash
Michael Regan/Getty Images

Manchester United is set to host Shakhtar Donetsk on Tuesday evening in a pivotal Champions League group stage finale at Old Trafford.

David Moyes' reeling Red Devils have already clinched a berth in the knockout stage, but Shakhtar will need to secure a victory and three points to ensure they advance to the round of 16. Depending on how Bayer Leverkusen fare at Real Sociedad in Tuesday's other Group A finale, Shakhtar could potentially advance with a loss or a draw.

The bottom line is that both United and Shakhtar control their own destiny on Matchday 6.

With the stage set for what's sure to be a dramatic and thrilling Group A finale, let's get you set with all the critical information you need to know ahead of kickoff.

 

Date: Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Start Time: 2:45 p.m. ET, 7:45 p.m. GMT

Where: Old Trafford, Manchester, England

Watch: Fox Sports 1 (U.S.), ITV 1 (U.K.)

Live Stream: Fox Soccer 2Go (U.S.), ITV Streaming (U.K.)

 

Match Forecast*

Manchester United: 66.8 percent

Shakhtar Donetsk: 12.9 percent

Draw: 20.3 percent

*Odds according to Bloomberg Sports.

 

Group A Breakdown

Champions League Group A
Pos. Team GP W D L GD Pts
1 Manchester United 5 3 2 0 8 11
2 Shakhtar Donetsk 5 2 2 1 2 8
3 Bayer Leverkusen 5 2 1 2 -2 7
4 Real Sociedad 5 0 1 4 -8 1

ESPN FC

Win, lose or draw, United is guaranteed a spot in the final 16. However, a loss to Shakhtar would cost the Red Devils the top spot in Group A as the two clubs played to a 1-1 draw in Donetsk in their first meeting back in October. 

Regardless of what happens in Bayer Leverkusen vs. Real Sociedad, a Shakhtar win on Tuesday would send the Ukrainian club and the English powerhouse through as No. 1 and No. 2 in Group A, respectively.

If Shakhtar earn a draw, Bayer Leverkusen can leapfrog them for second place with a win over Real Sociedad. If Shakhtar loses, Leverkusen will only need a draw with Sociedad to advance along with United. 

 

Shakhtar Boss Not Ready to Take United Lightly

Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Although United have struck a rough patch ahead of Tuesday's Champions League group stage finale, Shakhtar head coach Mircea Lucescu is admittedly wary of the Red Devils' potential on their home pitch, per UEFA.com"Even though they are not playing well, these are two different competitions and you can't really compare them."

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United have lost two consecutive home league games for the first time in more than a decade, failing to score a single goal in back-to-back defeats. 

Still, it's hard to argue that Moyes' squad haven't been the class of Group A to this point. United boast a plus-eight goal differential and are the only club in Group A to have earned a point in every one of their first five matches.

Despite the Red Devils' poor run of form, the pressure will fall squarely on Shakhtar on Tuesday.

 

Follow Bleacher Report Featured Columnist Patrick Clarke on Twitter. 

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