By Andy Hyslop
- Rooney and Rojo out of West Ham clash at Old Trafford
- Lingard available after missing draw with Leicester last Saturday
Manchester United will be looking to get back to winning ways against West Ham after two successive draws against PSV and Leicester. A win for United could see them finishing the weekend top of the league, depending on other results.
Manchester United welcome West Ham to Old Trafford on Saturday with the match kicking off at the traditional time of 3pm. Going into this game United sit third in the table, one point behind both Leicester and Manchester City.
A win for United and points dropped by both Leicester and City could see United finish the weekend on top of the table. Manchester City kick-off before United and visit Stoke, While visit Swansea and kick-off at 3pm like United.
Manchester United go into this game with several injury concerns. Shaw and Valencia are long-term injuries, while Jones and Herrera and still out with the injuries they picked up against Watford.
Rooney and Rojo are also out for this game. Rojo missed last weekends draw with Leicester but returned to training earlier this week, only to suffer a dislocated shoulder in training. It’s the same shoulder that he injured last season. The injury kept him out for four weeks then.
Rooney is out with an injury that he picked against Leicester last week. At the time Van Gaal stated he didn’t believe it was too serious and Rooney has been training this week but that appears to have made it worse and Van Gaal couldn’t say how long captain may be out for.
Some good news on the injury front is that Jesse Lingard is available again after missing the Leicester game with a slight hamstring strain.
The absentees in the backline has seen Van Gaal revert to a back three in the recent away games Watford and Leicester. We believe that for this game the manager will return to the 4-2-3-1 formation that United have been playing most of the season.
If that is the case, then Ashley Young will probably fill in at left-back with Blind partnering Smalling in the centre. Schweinsteiger has started a lot of games lately and may be given a rest in this game, meaning Schneiderlin and Carrick will be the midfield two.
In the absence of Rooney, surely Martial will start through the middle, with Mata playing in behind Martial. They are likely to be flanked by Memphis and the returning Lingard. These four all have the ability to rotate.
West Ham currently sit in 8th place in the Premier League table. They have enjoyed six wins this season and have suffered four defeats, meaning they have drawn their other four league games.
They have four wins out of seven games on the road in the Premier League this season. With three of those victories coming in their first three away games of season against Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City.
They haven’t won for four games, in fact since they beat Chelsea at Upton Park to move into the top four, they have suffered defeats at Watford and Tottenham, whilst drawing at home against Everton and last time out against West Brom.
The recent run without a win has coincided with West Ham losing several players to injury, especially French playmaker Dimitri Payet, who arrived from Marseille in the summer.
Before injury ruled out the Frenchman for three months, he scored five goals and assisted three for his team-mates in twelve Premier League appearances.
They suffered another blow this week with the lost of Diafra Sakho being ruled out for eight weeks with a hamstring strain he suffered against West Brom in their last game.