Manchester United return to Premier League action today with a trip to face fierce rivals Liverpool at Anfield.
Jose Mourinho will be keen to keep the club’s early season momentum going, in what will be the side’s toughest domestic assignment so far in 2017-18.
The United boss has some crucial decisions to make in selecting his Red Devils starting XI, with the centre of midfield certainly an area where the team is depleted.
While the latest team news shows that Paul Pogba remains sidelined and on the recovery trail, the French talisman has been joined on the fringes by Marouane Fellaini, who was injured on international duty.
With Michael Carrick also a doubt, the clash against Liverpool could well be an opportunity for Ander Herrera to stake his claim for regular inclusion in the starting XI.
The Spanish dynamo is a fans’ favourite and looked much improved last season, but the summer signing of Nemanja Matic has limited the former Athletic Bilbao man to just 131 minutes of Premier League action so far in 2017-18.
However, at Anfield Herrera looks set to get the nod to start the clash and fulfil the role that Pogba was operated in before he picked up his injury.
The Spaniard is certainly an excellent deputy, with the 28-year-old possessing the energy, technique, tenacity and vision to hurt Liverpool in the box-to-box role.
Should Mourinho opt to play a three-man central midfield, as he has done in tricky away assignments in the past, Herrera could well be the man charged with providing attacking impetus from the centre of the park.
Most would consider him unlucky not to feature more regularly this season, but the talented playmaker has become the main casualty of Matic’s signing and the Serb’s sublime start to life at Old Trafford.
However, with an opportunity to string together a run of games in the United team, Herrera has a timely chance to remind the travelling faithful and Mourinho just how good he is.