Manchester United are due to face Huddersfield Town in the 5th round of the FA Cup at John Smith’s Stadium on Saturday. They are placed at the 2nd spot in the league standings and lost 1-0 to Newcastle United last weekend at St. James’ Park in the Premier League fixture.
Having said that, they would be looking to bounce back and restore confidence back into their arsenal. The Red Devils must have known by now that the FA Cup is arguably the silverware they should fancy clinching this season and thus, we expect Jose Mourinho to field quite a strong side. Here is how we expect the Portuguese to roll out his starting line-up against the Terriers.
Sergio Romero deserves to get a start between the sticks for Mourinho’s side, having conceded just 4 goals in 7 starts so far this season. All of his appearances have come up in the cup ties and using Romero would mean that David de Gea would get a bit of rest.
The loss of Eric Bailly to injury has really taken a toll on Manchester United’s defence and he is set to be absent in the upcoming fixture as well. Phil Jones and Chris Smalling have been outsmarted by the opposition on a number of occasions lately and thus, we might see the duo of Victor Lindelof and Marcos Rojo being stationed at the heart of United’s backline for the cup fixture. Daley Blind is doubtful owing to his ankle injury.
Luke Shaw is set to be recalled to cater to the duties as the left-back as he is finally making his presence felt whereas, from the right-back position, Matteo Darmian has to showcase his industry and resilience. Antonio Valencia deserves some rest. With the fixtures about to get congested in the coming months, Mourinho’s defenders need to up the ante from here onward.
Marouane Fellaini is still out with his injury, while Ander Herrera is doubtful for the game. Nemanja Matic expected to be used in the deep-lying midfield role alongside Paul Pogba to bind the side together as a unit with their passes and vision and to also cushion the backline. Pogba needs to contribute more to his side after having seemingly appeared to be sluggish in recent games. Jesse Lingard is anticipated to take up the no.10 role once again.
The right flank has been a troublesome area for Manchester United and it would make a lot of sense if Mourinho uses Juan Mata in that role, and from the left-wing, Anthony Martial is expected to start. Marcus Rashford is a major doubt and Zlatan Ibrahimovic is out injured, which means that Romelu Lukaku should be the one leading Manchester United’s attack as usual.