Match Preview – Manchester Utd vs Newcastle Utd

Posted on by Matthew T

The Premier League returns after the international break on Saturday, which includes Manchester United hosting Newcastle United at Old Trafford. We preview the match, provide the team news and offer our prediction.

Match Preview – Manchester Utd

The build-up to this match is dominated by the return of Cristiano Ronaldo. After returning to the club from Juventus, the Portuguese superstar is set for his second debut for Manchester Utd. There are those who doubt his ability still, but there should be no concerns to the goals he will bring and the lift of the ‘buzz’ around the team.

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo looks set to start on Saturday at Old Trafford

Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will not want all of the focus to be on Ronaldo though. The Norwegian will be hoping his side can concentrate on earning a comfortable three points ahead of their Champions League opener in midweek.

Although Solskjaer will be pleased to see his side occupy third position in the table after only three matches, he will be disappointed they are not top of the pile. After a highly impressive opening weekend battering of Leeds United, the Red Devils limped to a 1-1 draw away to Southampton before narrowly defeating Wolverhampton Wanderers 1-0 thanks to a late Mason Greenwood effort.

Manchester United form: W-D-W

Match Preview – Newcastle Utd

Meanwhile, visitors Newcastle have endured a difficult start to the new campaign. The Magpies already find themselves down in 17th place after picking up just a single point so far. Defeats in the opening two matches to West Ham United and Aston Villa, were followed by a 2-2 draw at home to Southampton last time out before the international break.

Newcastle 2-2 Southampton
Joe Willock battles during Newcastle’s 2-2 draw with Southampton

Manager Steve Bruce was extremely disappointed with the result considering his side had the lead twice in the second half. Allan Saint-Maximin also thought he had scored a late winner for Newcastle, only for the visitors to equalise from the penalty spot deep into stoppage time.

There is already voices of discontent from the Newcastle faithful. Although they have been unhappy with the board for a number of years anyway, there have been further outbursts of anger due to the club only managing to sign Joe Willock in the summer transfer window. This despite the clear need for reinforcements throughout the squad.

Newcastle United form: L-L-D-D

Team News – Manchester Utd

Midfielder Fred will be missing for Manchester Utd on Saturday, as he has been served with a ban from FIFA. This has arisen with a number of clubs throughout Europe, due to clubs refusing to release their players to their South American national teams due to the region being listed on high-risk COVID-19 areas.

Fred
Fred will miss the match on Saturday, as well as the Champions League opener in midweek

Elsewhere, Jadon Sancho has reportedly recovered from his knock that forced him out of the England squad. He could line up in a mouth-watering ‘front four’ alongside Bruno Fernandes, Mason Greenwood and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Scott McTominay has returned to training but the match comes too soon for him. Dean Henderson, Phil Jones and Alex Telles have also returned to training after recent injuries. However, none of these were expected to start even if they were fit enough to make the squad on Saturday.

Marcus Rashford also misses out as he is not expected to return until October due to a shoulder operation.

Team News – Newcastle Utd

FIFA’s bans imposed on players is also affecting Newcastle. Miguel Almiron was due to play for Paraguay over the break but is now suspended for five days as well.

Miguel Almiron
Miguel Almiron will miss the trip to Old Trafford due to the same FIFA-imposed ban as Fred

Another big blow for the visitors is the absence of Callum Wilson. The key striker picked up a thigh injury against Southampton and will also miss out as a result. Joelinton will expected to be his replacement in attack.

First and second-choice goalkeepers Martin Dubravka and Karl Darlow remain unavailable so third-choice Freddie Woodman will continue to deputise in goal.

The never-ending injury list continues for manager Steve Bruce, as Jonjo Shelvey and Ryan Fraser will also not make the trip, with doubts over Isaac Hayden and Paul Dummett as well.

Expected Lineups

Manchester Utd (4-2-3-1): De Gea – Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Maguire, Shaw – Pogba, Matic – Greenwood, Fernandes, Sancho – Ronaldo

Newcastle Utd (5-3-2): Woodman – Murphy, Fernandez, Lascelles, Schar, Ritchie – Willock, Longstaff, Hendrick – Joelinton, Saint-Maximin

Editor’s Match Prediction

All of the signs and the form point towards a comfortable home win for Manchester Utd. Football can be strange sometimes but not many will expect any surprises on Saturday. Newcastle will sit deep and remain compact with their five-man defence and it will be up to the likes of Fernandes and Pogba to unlock them.

The hosts should have far too much quality for their visitors. Factor in the arrival of Ronaldo and Newcastle’s injury problems and it will be more of a question of “how many will they score?”, so I am saying 3-0 to Manchester Utd.

Scoreline Prediction: Manchester United 3 – 0 Newcastle United

Let us know your thoughts and predictions of the match in the comments section below!

ROMANIA coderdan Go Manchester!
ENGLAND soccerpunter Everyone expects nothing but a victory for Manchester United.

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