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Preview: Manchester United v Arsenal – Barclays Premier League 2015/16

Old Trafford, Manchester

Barclays Premier League 2015/16

Sunday 28th February 2016, KO 14:05 GMT live on Sky Sports 1HD

Referee: Craig Pawson;

Assistant Referees: Lee Betts and Marc Perry;

Fourth Official: Mike Dean

Manchester United face Arsenal in the Barclays Premier League on Sunday afternoon at Old Trafford. Earlier this season at the Emirates, Arsenal beat United 3-0 in a match that many reds will want to forget. United were just not good enough at the time, and still are not much better now, despite beating Midtjylland 5-1 on Thursday evening in the UEFA Europa League, winning the round of 32 clash 6-3 on aggregate to earn a round of 16 clash with Liverpool, a side they have beaten twice already this season. Louis van Gaal has won every match again the Scousers, which will boost morale ahead of that fixture. Arsenal remains the team for United to beat this weekend though, which will mean a lot to every supporter, especially at this stage of the season with United currently in sixth place in the league, ten points behind Arsenal, 16 behind leaders Leicester City and six points adrift of top four.

Manchester United are deep into another injury crisis but David De Gea should be back in goal for United after missing the last three matches through an injury sustained against Midtjylland over a week ago. Bastian Schweinsteiger has returned to training, but will be a big doubt for this match. Marcos Rojo returned to action in the 5-1 victory over Midtjylland at Old Trafford, which will be a big boost to the defence with many out of action there, which has seen the likes of Cameron Borthwick-Jackson and Joe Riley fill in at left-back. United do not have an ideal squad heading into this match and with Anthony Martial missing the last match due to an injury he sustained during the warm up in Thursday, similar to De Gea’s the week before, it is unknown as to whether he will be involved against Arsenal.

Marcus Rashford, who led the line for United on Thursday could start his second match, and as he scored twice against the Danish champions, looking lively during his debut, he could cause Arsenal some problems, should be start. It was a big boost for United, as was the performance by Memphis Depay, which silenced some of his critics who have been calling for him to be sold, so soon after he arrived. Patience seems to be something that is lacking for some United supporters, and also seems to pay off for players that need a bit of time to adjust. Too many believe what is written in the back pages of newspapers, rather than giving the player the time he needs, which causes so much unneeded discontent. United have done well recently considering the players they have been missing for much of the season, with the injuries coming to an and, slowly but surely, things can only get better. Come on UNITED!

Manchester United Statistics (Domestic League):

Based on Barclays Premier League 2015/16 [statistics taken from the Official Barclays Premier League website]

Played 26 matches, won 11, drawn 8, lost 7 and currently have 41 points

Scored 33 goals (1.27 goals per match) and conceded 24 goals (0.92 goals per match)

Longest unbeaten streak is 7 matches

Clean sheet record 46%

Arsenal (Domestic League):

Based on Barclays Premier League 2015/16 [statistics taken from the Official Barclays Premier League website]

Played 26 matches, won 15, drawn 6, lost 5 and currently have 51 points

Scored 26 goals (1.58 goals per match) and conceded 14 goals (0.88 goals per match)

Longest unbeaten streak is 6 matches

Clean sheet record 46%

Top Scorers (all competitions):

Manchester United: 14 – Wayne Rooney, 10 – Anthony Martial, 7 – Memphis Depay, Juan Mata, 5 – Jesse Lingard, Ander Herrera, 4 – Own Goal, 2 – Daley Blind, Marouane Fellaini, Marcus Rashford, Chris Smalling, 1 – Adnan Januzaj, Andreas Pereira, Morgan Schneiderlin, Bastian Schweinsteiger

Arsenal18 – Olivier Giroud, 10 – Alexis Sánchez, 6 – Mesut Özil, Theo Walcott, 5 – Aaron Ramsey, 3 – Joel Campbell, Laurent Koscielny, 2 – Mathieu Flamini, Carl Jenkinson, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 1 – Calum Chambers, Gabriel, Kieran Gibbs, Danny Welbeck

Manchester United Form: WWLLDW

Last Six Matches (all competitions): Midtjylland 5-1 W, Shrewsbury Town 3-0 W, FC Midtjylland 2-1 L, Sunderland 2-1 L, Chelsea 1-1 D, Stoke City 3-0 W

Arsenal Form: LDWWDW

Last Six Matches (all competitions): Barcelona 2-0 L, Hull City 0-0 D, Leicester City 2-1 W, Bournemouth 2-0 W, Southampton 0-0 D, Burnley 2-1 W

Head to Head:

Played 23 matches at Old Trafford in the Barclays Premier League:

Manchester United: Won 14, Drawn 6, Lost 3 – Scored 37 goals, conceded 12 goals and kept 12 clean sheets

Arsenal: Won 3, Drawn 6, Lost 14 – Scored 12 goals, conceded 37 goals and kept 6 clean sheets

Manchester United Squad:

Manager: Louis van Gaal

Goalkeepers: 1. David De Gea, 20. Sergio Romero, 34. Dean Henderson, 40. Joel Castro Pereira, 50. Sam Johnstone;

Defenders: 4. Phil Jones, 5. Marcos Rojo, 12. Chris Smalling, 23. Luke Shaw, 30. Guillermo Varela, 33. Paddy McNair, 36. Matteo Darmian, 38. Axel Tuanzebe, 41. Regan Poole, 43. Cameron Borthwick-Jackson;

Midfielders: 8. Juan Mata, 16. Michael Carrick, 17. Daley Blind, 18. Ashley Young, 21. Ander Herrera, 25. Antonio Valencia, 27. Marouane Fellaini, 28. Morgan Schneiderlin, 31. Bastian Schweinsteiger, 35. Jesse Lingard, 44. Andreas Pereira, 45. Sean Goss;

Strikers: 7. Memphis Depay, 9. Anthony Martial, 10. Wayne Rooney, 39. Marcus Rashford, 48. Will Keane

Doubts/Injuries: 1. David De Gea (knee), 3. Luke Shaw (broken leg), 4. Phil Jones (knock), 9. Anthony Martial (hamstring), 10. Wayne Rooney (knee), 11. Adnan Januzaj (hamstring), 18. Ashley Young (groin), 25. Antonio Valencia (ankle), 27. Marouane Fellaini (hamstring), 31. Bastian Schweinsteiger (knee), 35. Jesse Lingard (knee), 36. Matteo Darmian (dislocated shoulder), 43. Cameron Borthwick-Jackson (knock), 49. Will Keane (groin) [injury details taken from PhysioRoom.com]

Arsenal Squad:

Manager: Arsene Wenger

Goalkeepers: 13. David Ospina, 33. Petr Čech;

Defenders: 3. Kieran Gibbs, 4. Per Mertesacker, 5. Gabriel Paulista, 6. Laurent Koscielny, 18. Nacho Monreal, 21. Calum Chambers, 24. Héctor Bellerín;

Midfielders: 7. Tomáš Rosický, 8. Mikel Arteta, 10. Jack Wilshere, 11. Mesut Özil, 15. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 16. Aaron Ramsey, 19. Santi Cazorla, 20. Mathieu Flamini, 34. Francis Coquelin, 35. Mohamed Elneny, 37. Krystian Bielik;

Strikers: 12. Olivier Giroud, 14. Theo Walcott, 17. Alexis Sánchez, 23. Danny Welbeck, 28. Joel Campbell, 45. Alex Iwobi

Doubts/Injuries: 5. Gabriel Paulista (knee), 7. Tomáš Rosický (thigh muscle strain), 10. Jack Wilshere (calf/shin), 15. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (knee), 19. Santi Cazorla (knee) [injury details taken from PhysioRoom.com]

Predicted Formation/Starting XI:

Score Prediction:

Manchester United 2-1 Arsenal

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