Manchester United will be hoping to recall Scott McTominay to the starting XI when they host former boss Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham outfit on Wednesday.
Manchester United will be aiming to end former manager Jose Mourinho’s winning start to life at new club Tottenham Hotspur, when the two sides clash against each other at Old Trafford in the Premier League this week.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men are without a win in their last three fixtures across all competitions, leaving the manager under some pressure to get things back on track. However, the Norwegian’s situation hasn’t been helped by injuries to key players, as star midfielder Paul Pogba continues to remain sidelined for Manchester United.
Speaking in his pre-match press conference, Solskjaer said, “
No. Paul’s not ready, no. So, he’s still a bit away, but he’s working hard, so let’s see. He’s out [training] on the grass, so let’s see how long it will take.”
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) December 3, 2019
Along with Pogba, Manchester United continue to be without the services of Eric Bailly, Diogo Dalot, Timothy Fosu-Mensah and Marcos Rojo. Scott McTominay and Nemanja Matic are closing in on a return though, handing a boost to the Red Devils.
David de Gea is the obvious pick in goal for Manchester United, but there could be some alterations to the backline made by Solskjaer. Youngster Brandon Williams could make way for the more experienced Ashley Young, with the club captain likely to start ahead of Luke Shaw, who recently returned to full fitness.
Victor Lindelof may have scored a goal on Sunday against Aston Villa, but the Swede has looked well below his best this season. And Solskjaer may look to replace him with academy graduate Axel Tuanzebe, who has done well at every occasion he has been called upon. Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka ought to complete the Manchester United defence.
The midfield department is where Manchester United have been hit the hardest by injuries. Pogba is ruled out, but the manager did sound a touch more hopeful about the possibility of McTominay and Matic making a return to full fitness ahead of the game, with the duo back in training.
“[Scott and Nemanja] are touch-and-go, so let’s get this [today’s] training session out of the way. We’ve got more games than this one, so I can’t just look at one game. We’ve got to look at the long term,” he said.
Given that Andreas Pereira was woeful in the deep-lying role against Villa, Solskjaer will most likely bring McTominay back into the fold against Tottenham, should the Scotsman be passed fit. Fred too hasn’t been convincing, but is likely to be persisted with in the midfield double pivot, given the lack of options at the Manchester United manager’s disposal.
Jesse Lingard is expected to replace Juan Mata as the No. 10 for United against Tottenham on Wednesday night. No other changes are expected in the attacking third though, with Daniel James and Marcus Rashford manning the flanks while Anthony Martial spearheads the Red Devils’ attack.
Manchester United Predicted XI: de Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Tuanzebe, Maguire, Young; Fred, McTominay; James, Lingard, Rashford, Martial