Date: 30th October 2007 at 9:23am
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Several sources reported that Rio Ferdinand skipped today’s training and went for a scan with a groin problem.

The England defender missed a part of the end of last season with a groin injury so we know he’s prone to that kind of problem. Yet it would be a devastating blow right now if he was ruled out of the Arsenal game.

Don’t get me wrong: I trust Pique, he performed admirably at Villa Park but Arsenal are a different proposition. And here we can curse the absence of Gary Neville: if he was available, Wes Brown could offer a decent enough alternative in the centre and we’d have a good defence.

Of course, the most likely thing is that he will play there with John O’Shea deployed on the right side of the back four, probably his best position. But his lack of pace could cause serious problems as he will be up against Tomas Rosicky or Alexander Hleb… Owen Hargreaves will have a difficult game, that’s for sure and I would not be surprised if Anderson was omitted for Fletcher in the hope of more defensive steel.

Oh, another option is that we go out and try to outscore Arsenal – and I think it could even work but Fergie and Queiroz will never choose this. Would make one hell of a game though.