It is the Manchester derby on Saturday and our MEN writers have revealed their most well-liked United line-ups for the match.
Manchester United performs Manchester City at Old Trafford within the Premier League on Saturday afternoon.
United responded to the Liverpool debacle with a dominant 3-0 win in opposition to Tottenham – led by the ill-fated Nuno Espirito Santo – in London final weekend, however, they may solely save a draw in opposition to Atalanta in midweek within the Champions League.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was selected to make use of the 5-3-2 formation once more versus Atalanta, however, the United boss was pressured to vary again to this season’s problematic 4-2-3-1 when Raphael Varane left the sector via hamstring harm simply earlier than half-time.
Varane is anticipated to be sidelined for a couple of months, which suggests he is unavailable to play in opposition to rivals City on Saturday.
Which players will make Solskjaer’s XI? This is how our MEN writers assume United ought to line up…
United doesn’t have a midfield to regulate most games, by no means thoughts in opposition to Pep Guardiola’s ball-hoggers. They need to go to an again three once more and hope the group is as compact and unified of their play on and off the ball.
This isn’t the time to drop Harry Maguire or Luke Shaw and Eric Bailly has to maintain his place. Fred has been key in opposition to City prior to now and his power and urgency are wanted in opposition to them once more.
Marcus Rashford missed his likelihood to exert stress on Edinson Cavani in midweek. A bench of Rashford, Mason Greenwood, Jadon Sancho, Jesse Lingard, Donny van de Beek et al. might be decisive.
The harm to Varane is an enormous blow to United however I’d stick with the again three, given how simple an again 4 was to play in opposition to Leicester City and Liverpool.
If a match, I’d play Lindelof in the middle of the protection, with Maguire and Bailly finishing the again three. That leaves Wan-Bissaka and Shaw because of the wing-backs.
McTominay was wonderful within the holding position in opposition to Tottenham, with Fred and Fernandes additionally excelling in what was a way more compact midfield than in current weeks.
Then again three would possibly imply one much less attacker on the pitch however Cavani and Ronaldo proved per week in the past that they will create and take probabilities out of nothing. That partnership would give City quite a bit to fret about.
Harm to Varane is an enormous blow heading into the match and given he shall be out for the following month it’s maybe clever to not threaten Lindelof both given his personal health worries.
Shaw has been poor all season however would possibly enhance taking part in an auxiliary center-back position with Telles a wildcard candidate to get a run out on the left in his place.
McTominay and Fred are the one actual possibility for a match of this magnitude and their power shall be essential in disrupting a City facet that is able to doubtless dominate proceedings from the get-go.
Ronaldo is an absolute certainty upfront and Cavani’s power shall be wanted to compensate for his lack of movement off the ball.
Solskjaer has encountered Guardiola in eight games throughout his United reign and he is gained 4 of these and drawn one.
The Reds’ common possession from these Manchester derby triumphs is simply 32 p.c and it is laborious to not see this recreation creating into the identical mould with City set to get pleasure from a lot of the ball, however United thoughts finds pleasure on the counter-attack on this ‘new’ formation.
United managed the sport in opposition to Tottenham – albeit they have been led by an ill-fated Nuno Espírito Santo – and the group that gained 3-0 in London ought to stay principally unchanged right here, which suggests Cavani and Ronaldo can rekindle their partnership.
Bailly was excellent in opposition to Atalanta in midweek and one other efficiency of that caliber shall be wanted versus City.