The Red Devils interim boss Ralf Rangnick is under pressure to lift the mood around Old Trafford following the Premier League defeat to Wolves last week. The German tactician is presented with a genuine chance to lift a trophy this season, as the Mancunian giants look to bounce back to winning ways.
However, Rangnick and co. will be wary of Aston Villa, who have enjoyed an upturn in form under new manager Steven Gerrard.
Manchester United Team News
Ralf Rangnick could have a near full-strength Manchester United squad for the FA Cup third-round fixture. Scott McTominay and Luke Shaw are available as their one-game suspension will only count in the Premier League.
Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof have returned to training and Rangnick has confirmed the latter will definitely be available today, but Paul Pogba (groin) is still four-five weeks away from joining the squad training. Meanwhile, Eric Bailly and Hannibal Mejbri are at AFCON 2021.
Predicted Man United Lineup vs Aston Villa (4-2-2-2)
Dean Henderson could regain his spot from David de Gea as he is Manchester United’s cup goalkeeper. The Englishman will be raring to impress the interim boss and keep a clean sheet against the Villans.
As doubts remain over Harry Maguire’s availability, Raphael Varane is set to marshal the Man United backline in this FA Cup fixture. He will be partnered with Victor Lindelof, who has recovered from Covid-19. Diogo Dalot could return to right-back at the expense of Aaron Wan-Bissaka. Luke Shaw has done well in the last couple of games which might see him retain his spot at left-back in the Man United lineup.
Rangnick could ring some changes in a bid to freshen up the midfield. Donny Van de Beek could be handed a rare start, having warmed the benches since the start of the season. The Dutchman could partner Fred in the engine room, with the Man United midfield duo tasked to control the tempo of the game against an in-form Aston Villa side.
Bruno Fernandes is set to return to the starting XI after being dropped to the bench against Wolves last week. The Portuguese’s vision and incisive passing will be key in breaching the well-drilled Villa backline. Off the right, Mason Greenwood might get the nod ahead of Jadon Sancho in the Man United lineup.
Marcus Rashford is expected to return to the starting XI against Steven Gerrard’s side. The England international has struggled with form recently but could get a chance to impress in the cup competition. Cristiano Ronaldo might be rested for this FA Cup fixture, which will then see Edinson Cavani continue leading this Man United lineup.