The FA Cup is back and the big boys in the England are now in the competition where there is always calls for an upset.
Sheffield United travel to Old Trafford in the hopes of giving Louis Van Gaal further pressure as he is faces uncertainty over his Manchester United future with Pep Guardiola continually being linked with the job to replace him. The style of play has not been something United fans would be accustomed to since the glory days of Sir Alex Ferguson.
However, Van Gaal is incorporating a style of play which means domination of possession and making the team work together to attack. He has tightened up the defence but it is the attacking department which has not been scoring goals and causing a run of four defeats in a row. It all changed against Swansea when Martial and Rooney got onto the score sheet. Rooney’s instinctive footwork eased a bit of pressure from Van Gaal but the striker himself was on a draught from finding the back of the net. So this could be something to turn the tides at United to get the season back running again.
Van Gaal states there are many players in the red zone in terms of recovery and fit to play so there will be many changes to the starting line-up. Lingard is available after a few games out with a hamstring injury. Adnan Januzaj has returned from loan but is not fit enough to play. Valencia, Shaw, Rojo and Jones are long term absentees. Young could be rested.
Obviously, when a club from League One is facing a Premier League club, there is always a chance of an upset, especially the FA Cup providing many dramas in the past which is the beauty of the competition. Sheffield United are managed by Nigel Atkins and would be glad to see them sitting eighth in the league. So they will be in fighting spirits under the flood lights at Old Trafford. Let’s not hope the Red Devil’s do not take their foot off the pedal and give other first team players a chance to start. It would be good to see Memphis given a start and seeing Rooney up top on his own supported by Fellaini.
Possible starting XI:
Man Utd; De Gea, Varela, Smalling, McNair, Darmian, Carrick, Schneiderlin, Lingard, Fellaini, Memphis, Rooney.