Let’s take a look at the team news as Manchester United try to make it four consecutive wins in all competitions when they face an Aston Villa side with new manager Unai Emery on Sunday. Emery was revealed as the Villa coach on Friday, with the Spaniard returning to the Premier League following his short stay at Arsenal.
The Red Devils come into this game on the back of a morale-boosting win over Real Sociedad in the Europa League, despite failing to clinch the top spot. In the Premier League, Manchester United currently stand fifth in the table with 23 points, while a disappointing start has left Aston Villa down at 16th, just one point off the relegation zone.
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Douglas Luiz avoided a three-match suspension after his red card against Fulham was rescinded. Emery will be without Boubacar Kamara, Ludwig Augustinsson and Diego Carlos through injury, but Emiliano Martinez should be back in the goalkeeper role after recovering from the head injury that forced him off against Newcastle United.
Ollie Watkins and Danny Ings should both again be part of the side, while Leon Bailey is expected to feature in a wide area for the hosts.
United boss Erik ten Hag will most likely miss the trio of Anthony Martial, Jadon Sancho and Antony this weekend. Antony has a knock while Sancho is out with illness. Bruno Fernandes’s suspension means Fred or Donny van de Beek could get a start.
Ten Hag has a big decision to make in the heart of his defence, and Victor Lindelof could eventually get the nod over Harry Maguire to start alongside Lisandro Martinez. Rashford was used as a substitute against Real Sociedad but is expected to be back in the starting lineup here, alongside Cristiano Ronaldo, who has nine career goals against Villa.
Player To Watch Out For – Danny Ings
What makes Ings a typical yet quality English forward in, arguably, the most demanding league in the world is his incredible never-say-die attitude off the ball. The marksman spends almost half of his time in his own half, chasing players down and shutting down gaps, while also forcing the opposition to quicken their passing game.
The 30-year-old forward is also skilled with both feet, meaning he skips past challenges with ease and has good balance with the ball. Ings is physical, quick on his toes and a real fighter throughout his time on the pitch.
Aston Villa Form:
Manchester United Form:
Manchester United Probable Line-up Against Aston Villa (4-2-3-1):
David De Gea(GK); Diogo Dalot(RB), Victor Lindelof(CB), Lisandro Martinez(CB), Tyrell Malacia(LB); Casemiro(CM), Fred(CM); Anthony Elanga(RW), Marcus Rashford(LW), Christian Eriksen(CAM); Cristiano Ronaldo(ST).
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Predicted Score: Aston Villa 0-2 Manchester United
Manchester United are expected to run out as comfortable winners in this contest with Aston Villa playing their first game under the new manager. Emery will need some time to assess his players and get his preferred starting eleven. Expect goals from Ronaldo and Rashford in this one and the United defence to hold strong against the Villa attack for a clean sheet.
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