Manchester United will welcome back Marcus Rashford to the starting XI against Tottenham Hotspur, but Paul Pogba is likely to be benched.
Manchester United will restart their 2019/20 Premier League campaign on Friday night with a trip to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, where they will take on former manager Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham side.
Ahead of the game, manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer confirmed that he will have a near full-strength squad to choose from on Friday, with just two players absent, those being Axel Tuanzebe and Phil Jones.
Speaking in pre-match press conference on Thursday, the Norwegian said, “We have two players probably, Phil Jones and Axel will miss this game and the start and let’s see how bad they are, but apart from that the rest of the squad is fit, available.”
The big news, though, is that both Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba are fully recovered and ready to feature. “Marcus and Paul they have been out for a long, long period, but they are available, so how long they are going to play for, let’s see,” Solskjaer confirmed.
While Solskjaer has usually preferred to set his team up with a three-man backline against the Big Six sides, he is likely to stick with the 4-2-3-1 formation on Friday night against Tottenham. David de Gea remains the undisputed choice in goal for Manchester United.
Victor Lindelof and captain Harry Maguire should pair up at the heart of the defence. Aaron Wan-Bissaka has had a brilliant debut season with the Red Devils and is a certain starter in the right-back slot whereas Luke Shaw should edge out breakthrough starlet Brandon Williams on the left.
The midfield department brings a bit of a selection headache for Solskjaer. Fred, Scott McTominay, Nemanja Matic and the returning Paul Pogba will all battle for the two pivot positions. The manager is likely to choose not to thrust Pogba right back into action and ease him in. McTominay could be the unlucky one to miss out, with Fred and Matic in line to start.
Bruno Fernandes has been a revelation since joining Manchester United in the January transfer window. The Portuguese has added the creative element that was missing early in the season and should continue to operate as the No. 10. Flanking him on Friday should be Daniel James and the fit-again Rashford, who scored a double in the reverse fixture against Tottenham.
Anthony Martial should start as the lone striker for the Red Devils, with Odion Ighalo and Mason Greenwood providing backup options in the final third.
Predicted Manchester United XI: de Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw; Fred, Matic; James, Fernandes, Rashford; Martial