Ander Herrera and Antonio Valencia are set for their final appearances for Manchester United when they welcome Cardiff City to Old Trafford.
Manchester United will be hoping to end a tumultuous season on a strong note, when they play hosts to Cardiff City at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon. And, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looks set to make some elaborate shuffles to his starting lineup.
Sergio Romero seems to be a certain absentee for Manchester United, as he continues to recover from a tweak in his knee. And so, there is no looking past David de Gea once again, with the Spaniard set to be given a chance to end a tough campaign on a high.
The defensive unit sees Eric Bailly miss out once again, with the Ivorian done for the season due to a knee injury he suffered against Chelsea last month. In his absence, Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo present options to partner Victor Lindelof at the heart of the Manchester United defence.
On Sunday, Smalling should get the nod to form the central defensive partnership with Lindelof. In the right-back slot, club captain Antonio Valencia is in contention to make his final appearance for Manchester United, something which Solskjaer alluded to in his pre-match press conference, while also hinting that a couple of academy graduates will start against Cardiff.
“I spoke to Antonio yesterday. He’s not been fit the five or six months I’ve been here unfortunately. He’s really struggled but he feels that he could play a part and I would hope that he gets through today and tomorrow and we could give him a nice send off, because he’s been a fantastic servant to the club.”
“He’s been Player of the Year, he’s been captain at the club and I think that’s only fair. We’ve had some young players knocking on the door all season really and we’ll start with one or two of the kids as well.”
Valencia ought to start as the right-back, if he can prove his match fitness, with Luke Shaw expected to line up on the opposite flank. Meanwhile, among the youngsters who have trained with the first-team squad this week, is James Garner, who looks set to make his senior bow on Sunday against Cardiff.
The 18-year-old should start as the deepest of the three midfielders, with Ander Herrera being one of his partners. Herrera is another player who is set for his Old Trafford farewell after announcing his decision to leave Manchester United this summer. Paul Pogba will complete the numbers in the midfield.
The attacking unit should see two more full debuts, with newly-crowned Reserves’ Player of the Year Tahith Chong and Mason Greenwood set to make their first starts for Manchester United. The two academy products have been helped by the fact that Romelu Lukaku, Anthony Martial and Alexis Sanchez are all doubtful.
Greenwood and Chong should have Marcus Rashford for company in the final third, with Jesse Lingard and Juan Mata being named as backup options on the bench for Manchester United. Meanwhile, the likes of Dylan Levitt, Arnau Puigmal and Angel Gomes will also hope to get a chance off the bench.