Manchester United v Everton: Team news, Predicted XI, Opposition focus

By Ollie Cranham-Young

  • Young and Herrera available after injuries
  • Rooney and Shaw making progress with recovery from their injuries
  • Schweinsteiger out for this game and probably the season with injury sustained on International duty

Following a fantastic away win to Manchester City and an international break, the Reds return to action this weekend when they play host to Merseysiders Everton at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon.

United will be looking to build on their recent encouraging win from last time out and a win, results permitting, could see United go back into fourth position overtaking both Manchester a City and West Ham.

A good result against Everton on Sunday afternoon would see Louis Van Gaal’s men in prime position to secure Champions League football for another year.

Winning away at the Etihad just under two weeks ago was United’ first victory at the stadium since December 2012, when the infamous Sir Alex Ferguson was at the helm and United will be looking to use this result to build momentum in the coming weeks.

Prior to this, the Reds were knocked out of the Europa league by arch rivals Liverpool, drew 1-1 with West Ham forcing an FA Cup Quarter Final Replay, and suffered a 1-0 defeat to West Bromwich Albion.

United will be looking to better the recent poor form fans have endured at Old Trafford. A win for opposition side Everton is just as needed however. Roberto Martinez’s men currently sit in 12th place in the standings and their home form has been nothing short of unpredictable.

Everton’s away form makes better reading and they have lost once away from Goodison Park all season. The toffees last result in the league was a 3-1 victory away to Aston Villa and like United they will be looking to build on this following a recent run of mixed results.

Their mixed results have seen them lose 3-2 at home to West Ham and lose 2-0 at home to Arsenal. The last time the two sides met was back in October, where Louis Van Gaal’s men comfortably emerged victorious securing a 3-0 victory over the toffees thanks to goals from Schneiderlin, Herrera and Rooney.

Team News

German stalwart Bastian Schweinsteiger will miss the game due to a knee injury he sustained during the international break.

Ander Herrera and Ashley Young could return to the squad whilst Phil Jones likely to remain on the sidelines.

Wayne Rooney is expected to return to training next week following the fixture and defender Luke Shaw will also return to training, hopefully giving the whole team a confidence boost.

Will Keane is another player unlikely to feature for the Reds. Phil Jones has returned to fitness but is likely to feature for the under-21s before returning to first-team action.

Predicted XI

Following the win over City two weeks ago and the fact that all players involved in that win have either had a break or come through the International unscathed. We believe we could see an unchanged team for this one.

If the team is unchanged, that will mean a ninth straight start for 18 year-old striker Rashford, over the International break he appeared for England under-20s.

Opposition Focus

John Stones got injured whilst playing for England but is set to return for the toffees whilst Bryan Oviedo is likely to play a part despite missing the last two games through illness. Kevin Mirallas is back from suspension but Gareth Barry is still banned.

Finally, Steven Pienaar and Tony Hibbert will both also miss out for Everton as they are both absent due to injuries.

Romelu Lukaku will be Everton’s biggest threat to goalkeeper David De Gea on Sunday afternoon. Lukaku is the third-top goalscorer in the Premier League having netted 18 goals this season already.

He has also managed five goals in his last five games for Everton and also managed to find the net in midweek for Belgium against Portugal.

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