SATURDAY’S recreation at Previous Trafford supplies Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur with two completely different potentialities.
For the house facet the sport is an opportunity to get again on observe within the Premier League after an uninspiring draw at Liverpool, and a wretched defeat in opposition to Huddersfield.
That defeat even noticed Jose Mourinho query his gamers’ angle.
Spurs, in the meantime, journey north having dismantled Liverpool at Wembley on the again of a formidable draw within the Bernabeu in opposition to Actual Madrid.
Each have been in midweek motion within the League Cup however the two sides who will stroll out on the Theatre of Desires will look very completely different.
The massive names will return for what is anticipated to be the sport of the weekend.
The competition kicks off at 12.30pm and is being proven reside on Sky Sports activities and our mates at Soccer Whispers present the final word preview of the sport…
Key battle: Nemanja Matic vs Christian Eriksen
When Manchester United paid £40m to signal the highly effective Serbian from Chelsea this summer time questions have been requested as to why the Pink Devils had paid such a determine for the 29-year-old.
In any case, whereas Matic had been a part of the Blues title-winning facet, he was by far at his harmful greatest and, in reality, hadn’t been for over two years.
Nevertheless, it took simply 90 minutes of Premier League motion for Matic to show that Mourinho knew greatest.
He produced a man-of-the-match efficiency in his league debut for the Pink Devils, a Four-Zero thumping of West Ham United.
OUT OF LUK Manchester United ahead Romelu Lukaku set to battle in opposition to Tottenham this weekend… as he hardly ever performs in opposition to the “Large Six” sides
Matic has maintained his distinctive performances since, though he was poor in opposition to Huddersfield.
United will want Matic to be at his harmful greatest in opposition to Spurs, nevertheless, as he might want to shackle one of many Premier League’s excellent gamers, in Eriksen.
The Dane has turn out to be important for Spurs beneath the steerage of Mauricio Pochettino and his shows have seen him turn out to be a Barcelona switch goal.
This season Eriksen has averaged 2.Three key passes within the prime flight and is taking 2.eight pictures per recreation.
He’s Spurs’ most important creator and also you sense Mourinho will wish to stifle his affect on the sport.
He may use Ander Herrera if he overcomes harm however Matic, who’s averaging two tackles and two interceptions a per 90 minutes, is the extra possible possibility.
That is in no small half all the way down to his temperament and expertise in huge video games.
He’s been Mourinho’s destroyer previously, and needs to be on Saturday at Previous Trafford.
Potential match winners: Romelu Lukaku and Harry Kane
No shock names right here…
Two of the Premier League’s greatest strikers will go head-to-head and whichever enjoys the higher day ought to be capable to hearth their group to victory.
Since his transfer to United from Everton for £75m, Lukaku has been in glorious type.
He has scored 16 targets in 17 video games in all competitions, though hasn’t discovered the web in his final 4.
The primary of that sequence was in opposition to Liverpool.
His incapacity to notch in opposition to the Reds – albeit with Mourinho’s defensive ways – as soon as once more raised the query as as to if the massive Belgian is a flat-track bully.
Lukaku’s excellent begin to the season noticed him rating in opposition to Swansea Metropolis, Leicester Metropolis and Crystal Palace, amongst others.
However his failure to search out the web in opposition to the Reds meant the 24-year-old has solely scored 5 targets in 36 video games in opposition to the “Large Six” because the summer time of 2014.
The identical can’t be stated for Kane. Assuming the England worldwide is match, he’ll look to proceed his excellent run of type within the Premier League because the begin of September.
Kane has scored eight targets in his final six league video games, the most recent being the double he struck in opposition to Liverpool final weekend.
In distinction to Lukaku, Kane has confirmed himself the person for the massive event.
He has discovered the web 16 instances in 28 matches in opposition to the highest six in the identical interval as Lukaku.
Kane averages a purpose each Zero.57 video games in opposition to the highest flight’s greatest in comparison with the Belgium worldwide’s Zero.13.
Mourinho is more likely to go along with the tried and trusted in opposition to Spurs.
Whereas he deployed a again three within the midweek win over Swansea, anticipate the Portuguese to set his facet up in a Four-2-Three-1 system.
The largest dilemma is who slots into the attacking trio behind Lukaku, however barring harm, he’s more likely to go along with Juan Mata, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Marcus Rashford.
Pochettino is way extra tactically versatile and will arrange his facet with a again 4 or a again three.
The latter is extra more likely to fight the specter of Lukaku and, assuming Kane is match, a fluid entrance three of Eriksen, Dele Alli and Kane may very well be deployed.
United will assess Rashford (hamstring) and Herrera (ankle) forward of the sport.
However there’s excellent news for Mourinho with Phil Jones confirming he’s match after injuring his hip in opposition to Huddersfield.
Eric Bailly (groin) also needs to be able to return.
Paul Pogba (hamstring), Marouane Fellaini (knee), Michael Carrick (calf) and Zlatan Ibrahimovic (knee) are undoubtedly dominated out whereas Marcos Rojo (knee) is main doubts.
Mousa Dembele may return to Premier League motion however Erik Lamela isn’t anticipated to function as he inches nearer to a return.
The Argentine hasn’t featured for Spurs since October 25 final yr.
Victor Wanyama is dominated out because of a knee harm.
Kane has scored at the very least twice in every of the final eight video games through which he has discovered the web for Tottenham.
Solely Wayne Rooney (15) has struck extra Premier League targets as a teen for United than Marcus Rashford (13).
Mourinho has did not win all 19 Premier League video games through which his facet have fallen two targets behind (drawn one, misplaced 18).