Predictions: Manchester United v Leicester City – Barclays Premier League 2015/16

Manchester United face Leicester City in the Barclays Premier League at Old Trafford this afternoon. The visitors are champions-elect with a win confirming them as the champions, the sixth different team to win the league in 24 seasons. United must do all they can to stop Leicester from being crowned champions on their home turf – just imagine what the media will come up with should that happen. They will be full of beans to ridicule Manchester United, although that is no real change of agenda, as ridiculing Manchester United seems to put dinner on the table for journalists, especially this season. They would not have dared to say some of the things that have said if Sir Alex Ferguson was still leading the team. Here are our predictions for today’s match.

Liam Black: This is sure to be an intriguing encounter for both teams involved. Leicester City, the champions elect, could win the title at Old Trafford and be only the second visiting team in Premier League history to do, meanwhile, Manchester United could end the game only two points behind either Arsenal or Manchester City or even both of them, with a game in hand against both teams. Leicester will be without their talisman and top goal scorer, as he serves his second game of an FA ban for his red card against West Ham and verbally abusing the referee. This could affect the way that Leicester play as they will lose their pace on the counter-attack, however, goal scoring without the suspended Vardy did not seem to be a problem for Leicester as they romped to a 4-0 victory over Swansea. Meanwhile, Manchester United overcame a difficult second half in the FA cup semi-final to beat Everton, courtesy of a 93rd minute Anthony Martial winner.

Starting XI: De Gea; Darmian, Smalling, Blind, Rojo; Schneiderlin, Rooney, Fellaini; Lingard, Rashford, Martial

I only expect a few changes from the side that started in the FA cup last weekend. I fully expect Timothy Fosu-Mensah to drop out of the starting eleven after giving away a penalty against Everton, much like Guillermo Varela hasn’t been seen in the first team since a torrid first half against Liverpool back in March. Marouane Fellaini had one of his best games in a United shirt at the weekend and I think that he could be pivotal to a Manchester United win again. N’Golo Kante can run the game from the midfield for Leicester. Kante is only 5’7” feet, whilst Fellaini stand at 6’4” feet, I think this height difference could allow Fellaini to bully Kante out of the game and allow Manchester United to dominate the midfield and therefore, dominate the game, leading Manchester United to Victory. Leicester have only lost three Premier League this season, despite this, I do have a good feeling about this one and predict a victory. I think that Riyad Mahrez will score first for Leicester but I fully expect Manchester United to overcome the deficit and win the match thanks to goals from Jesse Lingard and Morgan Schneiderlin.

Match Prediction: Manchester United 2-1 Leicester City

Adimurti Pramana: A potential title decider at Old Trafford. Haven’t had that in a while, have we? It’s just a shame that United aren’t the club going for the title in this case. Leicester would be going into this match knowing that they could wrap up the title with a win, but United would need every point they could get to stay in the race for Champions League qualification. With United still riding the high of last weekend’s FA Cup semi-final win over Everton, and Leicester still without star striker Jamie Vardy, United have a good chance of getting a result. But Leicester are still a force to be reckoned with. They’ve been dominant in their own way for a large portion of the season, and one missing striker wouldn’t undo all of that, as they showed in their 4-0 thumping of Swansea last week.

Starting XI: De Gea; Darmian, Smalling, Blind, Rojo; Schneiderlin; Lingard, Fellaini, Rooney, Martial; Rashford

I’m not Marcos Rojo’s biggest fan, and the prospect of him going up against newly-crowned Player of the Year Riyad Mahrez makes me nervous. I would prefer Tim Fosu-Mensah starting in his place, but I doubt he would be given a starting berth after that harsh penalty decision against Everton. The only other change from last week’s team I see happening is Morgan Schneiderlin in place of Michael Carrick, who could add extra protection to the defence, as well as help deal with the strong, direct running of N’Golo Kante. In terms of result, I can see the game ending the way it started: goalless. I can see the defensive duo of Chris Smalling and Daley Blind continuing their fine form against a Vardy-less Leicester. On the other end, however, I think United would struggle to break Leicester down, especially if United revert back to their regular slow buildup.

Match Prediction: Manchester United 0-0 Leicester City

Do you think Manchester United will beat Leicester City at Old Trafford today?

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