Manchester United kick-off their final game of the group stages against RB Leipzig. It takes place at Old Trafford on Tuesday, at 20:00 DST. You can watch it live on BT Sport. The coverage of this game starts at 19:00.
This is probably the most anticipated Champions League group stage game for quite some time. A lot of eyes will be on this one. The outcome of this game is of interest not just to fans of United and Leipzig, but also neutrals, and for PSG fans regarding their own chances of qualifying. United must get at least a draw to qualify for the knockout rounds.
This of course is make-or-break for Ole. United currently sit in 6th in the table, with one game in hand and five points off the top. We are in a much more comfortable situation than many fans could have anticipated a couple of weeks ago, and this could really be the point where fan confidence in Ole is more firmly reinstated. Making it through into the knockout rounds and being in this position in the Premier League, it is certainly not doom and gloom and is in actuality, a very nice place to be.
We are unfortunately without Martial and Cavani, which is potentially a huge blow to us. Whilst Martial is currently lacking confidence, it only takes a moment for him to find the net and is certainly going to be missed. Cavani on the other hand is in good form, and he would have been a strong string to our bow. The absence of both Cavani and Martial I feel is going to be detrimental.
Paul Pogba has yet again been in the limelight over the past 24 hours for the wrong reasons. I would not be surprised to see him missing from the team entirely. His agent’s remarks made yesterday are incredibly bad timing and Ole will most likely want to make a stand. This means that Donny van de Beek will probably have an opportunity to continue his great form and start for United. Bruno will no doubt start alongside him.
I think that rather than approaching this game cautiously, United should set up to attack. This for me would mean only starting Matic as the standalone Holding Midfielder. Scott would be the only other option to accommodate that midfield position, but I do not think Ole has that much faith in him to occupy that role. However, as we have seen on numerous occasions, he likes to have two sitting in front of the defence.
In a perfect world, I think Ole would have loved the opportunity to use Luke Shaw in this one and utilise him in a back three with Telles and AWB as wingbacks. Unfortunately, Shaw is not available, so Ole will most likely have to go with a back four.
David De Gea has a few question marks around his fitness after a knee issue sustained against Southampton. He did play the full ninety minutes against PSG last week, and will no doubt be the key man between the stick here.
As mentioned in the ‘Three Point Preview’. Leipzig are without Dayot Upamecano and have been very suspect when conceding goals as of late. Their current form in the last five games is one loss, two draws and two wins in all competitions. Conceding nine and scoring ten.
What I would like to see is: De Gea, Wan-Bisakka, Maguire, Lindelof, Telles, Matic, VDB, Bruno Fernandes, Mata, Greenwood and Rashford. My prediction of the score line is Leipzig 1, Manchester United 2.