Manchester United vs Manchester City
EFL Cup
Wednesday, October 25, 2016
Old Trafford

Well the 4-0 loss to Chelsea was a result Manchester United, pundits or fans alike would’ve predicted. As Gary Neville said in commentary, it was the type of game we would’ve expected to see at Anfield just days earlier, but after just 30 seconds United imploded.

They now face another one of their rivals with Manchester City visiting Old Trafford, but with only one point to show against Liverpool, Chelsea and City earlier in the season, the Red Devils will undoubtedly be underdogs for Wednesday’s EFL Cup tie. When it comes to earning a victory, Manchester United odds for the Manchester City game can’t look great.

And rightly so, despite Chelsea allowing United to have possession, especially in the second half, they rarely threatened Courtois and his defence, however they could have more joy against City’s recent leaky defence.

I seem to write this every week, but Jose Mourinho has another selection dilemma ahead of the game.

How serious does he take it? With Eric Bailly injured for two months, Phil Jones out for an indefinite amount of time, and the likes of Chris Smalling and Daley Blind most likely being shot of confidence after the weekend, the centre of defence is going to be key against City.

Possibly Timothy Fosu-Mensah may get a run in the side, after impressing for the reserves in that position, or it means Marcos Rojo may get some first-team action after making most of his appearances this season from the subs bench.

Then on the other end of the pitch, does Mourinho persist with Zlatan Ibrahimovic as his spearhead. Playing Marcus Rashford on the wing so far this season has been largely ineffective.

He shouldn’t be crossing the ball from deep-wide positions, instead he should be taking defenders on, and being a danger in the box, as he was at the end of last season.

And finally, the mystery of Henrikh Mkhitaryan continues. United needed someone against Chelsea to take defenders on, a player who had a flash of skill and a killer end product.

That’s what Mkhitaryan was suppose to supply for this United team, however Mourinho for whatever reason, hasn’t fancied him so far, however could he make a surprise appearance against City?

The Red Devils, needless to say, need a result against City. Although the Blues haven’t won in five games, United also haven’t won in October and something will have to give on Wednesday evening.

Team news

Aside from Bailly who’s put on social media he expects to be out for two months, United don’t have any new injury concerns from the loss against Chelsea. Rooney could still be out with his injury he picked up before the 4-0 loss.

Manchester City midfielder Kevin de Bruyne will miss the game after he picked up a calf injury on the weekend.

Vincent Kompany could continue at centre-back after returning against Southampton but Pablo Zabaleta is out.

Predicted line-ups

Man Utd: De Gea, Valencia, Fosu-Mensah, Blind, Shaw; Herrera, Carrick, Pogba; Lingard, Rashford, Martial

Man City: Bravo, Sagna, Kompany, Stones, Clichy; Gundogan, Fernandinho, Fernando, Nolito: Sterling, Aguero

 

 




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