Papers: Turf test for United
Wigan pitch could be field of screams
Wigan will have a new pitch by the time Manchester United set foot in town - but Sir Alex Ferguson is in for a nasty shock. Because the Latics are only funding the fitting of two strips of new turf down the middle and across their shocking surface for the visit of the Premier League leaders. Boss Roberto Martinez has ordered the work to be done as the rutted 'top' is spoiling his plan for his skilful team to play their way out of trouble. But the final job will look like a green version of the St George cross - as Wigan are restricted by cash and availability of suitable turf for the whole project. Wigan found out to their horror that there were limited supplies available and they were only allowed to use enough to repair the most badly-damaged sections. So instead of a whole new surface Wigan will have to make do, with United the first to test out the patched-up effort at the start of a run-in that will decide the fates of both clubs.Alan Nixon, The Mirror
Elsewhere, The Telegraph and The Independent both report on Crawley Town’s visit to Old Trafford on Thursday afternoon. The non-league side took a guided tour of the stadium ahead of Saturday’s FA Cup fifth round clash.
There’s also a lot of talk about Champions League final tickets. UEFA announced the pricing structure for 11,000 tickets to be released on general sale next week, the cheapest of which (for able-bodied users) will cost £150. The Daily Mail describe the reaction as “fan fury”.
Meanwhile, print editions of The Mirror and The Star run the Daniele de Rossi transfer rumour, first reported yesterday online.
More: Match pack: Crawley Town | Reds eye de Rossi | Video: Greatest United goals