Manchester United play their second game of the restarted Premier League on Wednesday night when namesakes Sheffield United make the trip across the Pennines to Old Trafford.
Few would have expected this to be a Champions League ‘six-pointer’ when the season began, but that is the nature of the game given the Blades’ impressive first year back in the top flight.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has an almost fully fit squad at his disposal, although he must be careful with his selection as a number of Premier League clubs have already suffered injuries so far.
Here’s a look at the Red Devils side that should start the game…
Goalkeeper & Defenders
David de Gea (GK) – The United number one has the faith of Solskjaer, who has referred to him as the ‘best in the world’ in the wake of a high profile against Spurs last week. Longer term, he’ll have to keep an eye on Dean Henderson over his shoulder.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (RB) – Wan-Bissaka has underlined his status as probably the best one-on-one defender in the Premier League since joining United last summer. He is one of the first names on the team-sheet and there are few other options currently available.
Eric Bailly (CB) – Victor Lindelof is not thought to be an injury doubt for the game at Old Trafford, despite coming off on Friday. Yet with rotation such an important aspect of the final weeks of this season there is a strong chance that Bailly could still get the nod to start anyway.
Harry Maguire (CB) – The skipper will be well aware he should have done better when Steven Bergwijn scored for Spurs on Friday night. Fans will hope that lapse was a one-off and the result of rustiness rather than anything more serious.
Brandon Williams (LB) – Luke Shaw could make way for Williams in another rotation shift. Shaw was eager to get forward and attack against Spurs in a generally impressive performance, although his delicate fitness in the past means Solskjaer must be careful.
Nemanja Matic (CM) – Matic started on the bench against Spurs and appeared for the final 15 minutes. The veteran Serbian was in resurgent form prior to the coronavirus lockdown and could start here in order to ensure others aren’t overworked.
Bruno Fernandes (CM) – United’s newest star operated in an attacking midfield role against Spurs and was the team’s chief creator. He could drop into a deeper ‘number eight’ role in a game where creativity is going to be more important against a well drilled and tightly packed defence.
Paul Pogba (AM) – Pogba’s cameo against Spurs gave United the lift they needed to get back into the game and his partnership with Fernandes showed promising signs. The pair could well interchange between ‘number 10’ and ‘number eight’ roles throughout the game.
Mason Greenwood (RF) – Greenwood scored the very first Premier League goal of his career in the reverse fixture against Sheffield United back in November. The teenager looked sharp when he came off the bench against Spurs and could replace Daniel James.
Anthony Martial (ST) – Martial is tasked with being United’s chief penalty area forward, a role he has become more accustomed to this season. His ability to sniff out a goal has improved over the last 12 months and he will need to call on that in what could be a tight game.
Marcus Rashford (LF) – Rashford couldn’t mark the return of football with a goal after a string of admirable and impressive off-field achievements during the coronavirus break. He will be determined to get back among the goals and his next will be his 20th of the season.
Source : 90min