Perhaps because he just needs a rest, or perhaps because he had his worst game of the season over the weekend, Wayne Rooney has been benched for Manchester United's Boxing Day match against Newcastle United. Ryan Giggs looks set to play on the left as Alex Ferguson goes with a rare traditional 4-4-2. Newcastle are dealing with some injury issues, but might be mailing it in a bit against United and resting stars in midfield for more winnable encounters to come. Gael Bigirimana, a talented 19-year-old, gets a rare start in midfield for the Magpies.
Manchester United starting lineup (4-4-2): David De Gea; Patrice Evra, Jonny Evans, Rio Ferdinand, Chris Smalling; Ryan Giggs, Michael Carrick, Paul Scholes, Antonio Valencia; Javier Hernandez, Robin van Persie
Newcastle United starting lineup (4-4-2): Tim Krul; Davide Santon, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Danny Simpson; Gael Bigirimana, James Perch, Vurnon Anita, Sylvain Marveaux; Papiss Cisse, Demba Ba