Eduardo confident Shakhtar can upset Manchester United

By David OrnsteinBBC Sport
Eduardo confident of beating Man Utd

Eduardo thinks Shakhtar Donetsk can add to Manchester United's woes when the teams meet at Old Trafford on Tuesday.

United have already qualified for the Champions League knockout stages but are struggling in the Premier League after two consecutive home defeats.

"We know they have got some trouble now and we will try to win," former Arsenal forward Eduardo, 30, told BBC Sport.

"We watched their last few games and have a lot of confidence that we can make a big surprise."

Having succeeded Sir Alex Ferguson as United manager in the summer, David Moyes has seen his team fall 13 points behind top-flight leaders Arsenal.

They lost to Everton last Wednesday and Newcastle on Saturday, suffering back-to-back league defeats at Old Trafford for the first time since the 2001-02 season.

United's European campaign has been less fraught, however, and they sit top of Group A, three points above second-placed Shakhtar heading into the final round of matches.

But victory for the Ukrainian champions would see them top the group, handing United a potentially hazardous draw in the last-16.

The teams played out a 1-1 draw in the earlier meeting this season at Donbass Arena on 2 October.

Mircea Lucescu's men, quarter-finalists in 2011, are seeking a first win on English soil after four defeats and a draw in their five previous visits.

"For us, it will be like being in the final because we live for this game, to play here in England and at Old Trafford against Manchester United - one of the biggest clubs in the world," said Croatia international Eduardo, who joined Shakhtar from Arsenal for £6m in 2010 after three years with the Gunners.

"We will be very motivated and maybe in this moment it's more important for us than for them because we want to go to the next round and play in the final.

"It will be very, very hard because Manchester United play every game at a high level and have more experience in games like this. But we will try to win."

The Brazil-born striker believes United will rally in the new year, but is backing his former side to lift their first league title since 2004.

"It is difficult to replace Sir Alex Ferguson, but when I played here in England sometimes Manchester United started very badly and after that they started going up," Eduardo added.

"I think they'll be much better from Christmas time than before, and I'm sure they'll finish in the top four, for sure.

"I'm pleased Arsenal are top. Two years ago they had a similar situation to United now - they started very badly but then went up, and they always finish in the top four.

"I'm sure that if Arsenal show the same mentality as last season from Christmas time to the end of the season, they will be champions of the Premier League.

"They never changed their style of football and they have the same people inside the club. They have just been waiting for a little bit of luck to become champions.

"This year everything is open for them to finish first. In England and the Premier League, if you lose one game everything can change. But I'm sure they can do it."