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Moyes hoping to right wrongs of season with victory over Bayern


Manchester United manager David Moyes. Picture credit: Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Manchester United manager David Moyes. Picture credit: Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Manchester United manager David Moyes. Picture credit: Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

DAVID MOYES wants to right some of the wrongs that have marred his maiden season at Manchester United by achieving an improbable Champions League victory over Bayern Munich.

A difficult week for the Scot ended on a high note on Saturday as his team beat Aston Villa 4-1 at Old Trafford. An airborne protest against Moyes backfired as the home support rallied around their beleaguered manager during a comfortable win, which came courtesy of a brace from Wayne Rooney, plus goals from Juan Mata and Javier Hernandez.

The win, which moved United to within 10 points of the Premier League top four, was a welcome boost to morale after the 3-0 defeat to Manchester City last week, but Moyes knows a tougher task awaits his team when Bayern Munich come to Old Trafford tomorrow night.

Pep Guardiola's stellar team won the Bundesliga last week with seven games to spare, but Moyes sees the Champions League quarter-final as an opportunity to ease some of the pain of a disappointing campaign.

"It's been a difficult season for us, but we can go a long way to doing an awful lot better if we can get a result on Tuesday," the United boss said.

"The players are incredibly focused and I am really looking forward to the game."

If the fans who clubbed together the £840 for the 'Wrong One – Moyes Out' banner thought the stunt would trigger open dissent towards Moyes, then they guessed wrong.

The home fans inside Old Trafford booed when the plane appeared and Moyes' name was sung on a few occasions, particularly in the second half when it became apparent United were going to win by a considerable margin.

"The majority of people are very supportive," Moyes said. "They understand the job we are doing. We know we have a big job to do here and we are determined to put it right." Moyes' biggest signing since he took over at Old Trafford, Juan Mata, put on his best display in a United shirt on Saturday. Robin van Persie's injury means Mata has been shifted from the right into the number 10 position where he excelled at Chelsea.

Mata (right) won successive player of the year awards at the London club because of his exploits in that position and, from his exploits against Villa, it is easy to see why.

The Spaniard linked well with Rooney, Ashley Young and Shinji Kagawa as part of a dynamic front four, and he got the goal he deserved in the second half by prodding home Marouane Fellaini's pass to make it 3-1. The 25-year-old scored 32 goals in his final two seasons at Chelsea and now he hopes to notch many more for his current employers.

"It felt very good to score," Mata said. "It's taken a few games, but I felt that it was coming."

United defender Rafael, meanwhile, is a doubt for the match against Bayern after he missed training this morning.

The right-back came off at half-time during United's 4-1 win over Aston Villa on Saturday with a thigh strain and he did not feature in the 15-minute training session open to media at Carrington on Monday.

The good news for United was that centre-backs Rio Ferdinand (back), Chris Smalling (hamstring) and long-term absentee Jonny Evans (calf), who all missed Saturday's victory, took part in the session at the Aon Training Centre.

Left-back Alex Buttner ended the Villa game with a tight hamstring, but he trained, as did winger Antonio Valencia, who missed Saturday's game with a knee injury.

The only other absentees from the session were injured striker Robin van Persie, the suspended Patrice Evra and midfielder Tom Cleverley.

The Germans will come to Manchester without midfielder Thiago Alcantara though as he suffered a knee injury during Bayern's 3-3 draw with Hoffenheim on Saturday.