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Confirmed XI: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer names strong team to face Leicester; Martial and Rashford back – change of shape?

Manchester United return to Premier League action this afternoon, Boxing Day, once again on the road as they travel to face Leicester City at the King Power Stadium. Last season, United won this fixture 2-0 with a Bruno Fernandes penalty and a late Jesse Lingard goal to confirm United’s third-place finish in the league and therefore a place in the UEFA Champions League, which they have now exited. United have started to turn their season around with a 6-2 victory over Leeds United in the league last weekend, followed by a 2-0 victory over Everton in the quarter-final of the Carabao Cup, setting up a semi-final against Manchester City.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be looking for another victory on the road this season as he looks to keep chase on Premier League leaders, Liverpool with Leicester in second-place with 27 points after 14 matches so far. United will have a game in hand over Leicester, playing just 13 times in the league this season but having just one point fewer in third place in the league at this stage of the season. Solskjaer will have confidence inn getting the upper hand over Brendan Rodgers, especially after the clubs current form and the fact United are unbeaten in their last 12 matches against the Foxes, winning nine and drawing three times.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Lindelof, Bailly, Maguire, Shaw;

Fred, McTominay;

James, Fernandes, Rashford;

Martial

Substitutes:

Henderson; Telles, Tuanzebe; Pogba, Lingard, Matic, Van de Beek; Cavani, Greenwood

Leicester City:

Schmeichel;

Justin, Fofana, Evans, Castagne;

Ndidi, Tielemans;

Albrighton, Maddison, Barnes;

Vardy

Substitutes:

Ward; Amartey, Fuchs, Thomas; Choudhury, Mendy, Praet; Iheanacho, Perez

United and Leicester have met 28 times in the history of the Premier League. United have won 19 times, drawing seven times and losing just twice. United have scored 60 goals against Leicester, winning four penalties and scoring three of them. Leicester have scored 22 goals, winning two penalties and scoring both of them. United have kept 14 clean sheets with Leicester keeping two. In terms of discipline, United have been shown 37 yellow cards with one red card whereas Leicester have been shown 33 yellow cards and three red cards. United will be looking to win their 20th match in the Premier League against Leicester.

Last season at the King Power Stadium, which was played on the 26 July 2020 (the final day of the season) United won 2-0 with a 71st minute penalty by Bruno Fernandes and a Jesse Lingard goal eight minutes into added time. The victory saw United confirm their third place position in the Premier League and therefore a place in the UEFA Champions League. At Old Trafford last season, which was played 14 September 2019, United won the match 1-0 with Marcus Rashford scoring from the penalty spot in the eight minute of the match. United were beaten 5-3 by Leicester on the 21 September 2014, a devastating result for the club.

Written by John Walker

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