By Kiran Thakare
- Bastian Schweinsteiger ruled out with knee injury
- Carrick and Young expected to return to starting line-up
Manchester United gear up to face Newcastle United at St James Park in Premier League after a scrappy 1-0 win over Sheffield United in FA cup on Saturday.
The next two games for United are away from home and could prove crucial for United’s season and the future of Louis Van Gaal as manager
United currently sit fifth in the Premier League table three points behind fourth placed Tottenham Hotspurs. The Red Devils will be looking to grab win against Newcastle to gain momentum ahead of crucial fixtures in January.
Louis Van Gaal confirmed on Monday that Bastian Schweinsteiger is ruled out for the trip to Newcastle due to a knee injury he suffered against Sheffield United.
Ashley Young ,Morgan Schneiderlin and Michael Carrick are most likely to return to the side.
Phil Jones will continue to be on sidelines with an ankle injury so a back four of Matteo Darmian, Chris Smalling, Daley Blind and Ashley Young is likely to feature against Newcastle.
Luke Shaw, Marcos Rojo and Antonio Valencia remain the long term absentees. The attackers will likely to remain the same which featured against Sheffield United.
We expect Young to come back into the back four at right-back with Darmian switching to left-back. With Smalling and Blind continuing at the centre of the defence.
In midfield we expect both Schneiderlin and Carrick to return to the starting line-up, especially in the absence of Schweinsteiger.
in attacking areas we expect to once again start with Rooney as the main striker, flanked by Mata and Martial with Herrera in the no.10 role.
The Red Devils finally grinded out a win against Swansea City after three consecutive defeats during the festive season. United have been enduring a drought of goals and are not able to defend which was their strong point at the start of the season.
Martial has been the only bright spark for the team as he has been grabbing goals and assists during the poor form. Rooney has scored two goals in last two matches and Van Gaal will be hoping that his captain delivers a good performance against Newcastle.
United drew 0-0 against Newcastle United at Old Trafford earlier this season. The Red Devils lack creativity in the final third and vulnerable on counterattacks as they dominate possession.
Newcastle have endured a tough season as they sit 18th in the table. They are on a run of a four consecutive defeats in all competitions.
But despite their struggles they have surprised the big boys as they defeated Tottenham at White Hart Lane and gave Arsenal a run for their money at Emirates.
Georginio Wijnaldum has been their best player this season, scoring seven times in the League. The Dutch international is a threat in the final third with his clever runs.
Ayoze Perez is another creative forward who can trouble United with his pace and trickery. The tall Alexsander Mitrovic could be a threat from set-pieces and cause problems for Smalling and Blind.