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

Old Trafford, Manchester

Barclays Premier League 2015/16

Tuesday 17th May 2016, KO 20:00 BST Live on Sky Sports 1HD

Referee: Jonathan Moss

Assistant Referees: Adrian Holmes and Harry Lennard

Fourth Official: Graham Scott

Manchester United face Bournemouth in their final Barclays Premier League match of the season at Old Trafford on Tuesday after Sunday’s match was abandoned after a device, which later turned out to be a training aid forced the club and police to cancel the match from commencing. It was not the season we all wanted or a season we predicted. In fact, it was a season that many will not want to remember for many reasons. The football was dire, the philosophy was not working, the players seemed to lack the ability to drive forward, pressure their opposition and win matches, injuries again were not kind to the team, but there were some reasons to remember. Louis van Gaal blooded in yet more talented youth, whether you believe it was meant to happen, or seem to look at the fact they came during a period of injuries. Despite the Dutchman suggesting, he decreased the size of his squad at the start of the season for that reason. Manchester United’s youth are very talented, you can see that in the way they won the Barclays U21 Premier League this season, despite for much of the season lacking an out-and-out striker. Many players were given a chance in the first team, some are still there now, others will be fighting for their chances again, that is the one thing that has excited me this season. Youth coming through is what Manchester United are all about, yet there are still moans galore with many supporters refusing to let go of the glory sustained under Sir Alex Ferguson. He’s retired now, he will not be coming back. Remember his time at the club as successful, let go of it, there is a chance that nothing like that period will ever happen again. Look forward to the future. Get behind the team.

United have had a poor week in football. Beating Norwich City last weekend, with Manchester City and Arsenal drawing, United had the chance to steal a top four place by beating West Ham United in the last ever fixture at Upton Park. United ended up losing 3-2, despite leading 2-1 early in the second half of the match. That was United’s chance to earn a top four place on their own. This weekend, they will have to rely on Swansea City to beat Manchester City and they will have to beat Bournemouth in order to steal a top four place, which I have to say is not something Manchester United deserve this season. How they are even in the top five amazes me after the season the club has had. Eighteen clean sheets have been kept in the league this season, fifteen of those by David De Gea himself. He will find himself going head to head with Kasper Schmeichel, Petr Cech and Joe Hart for the golden glove. Keeping a clean sheet against West Ham United would have given him a head start to win the honour, but that was just not meant to be. United have the second best defence in the league this season, with only Tottenham Hotspur ahead of them. United have only conceded 34 goals this season, which has to be an achievement, considering Daley Blind has partnered Chris Smalling for the majority of the season.

Louis van Gaal has a chance to finish the season at the club on a high with a top four finish, even to win at Old Trafford on the final day of the season will be enough to end the season on a high, heading into the Emirates FA Cup final in a week’s time. Manchester United could find themselves lifting the FA Cup for the first time in twelve years, which will be an achievement, but will also not paper over the cracks at the club, with abject failure surrounding the club, with not just the manager and players in the firing line. Those in the board room have also been shown up for what they are. Ed Woodward included. The club needs to bring in a Director of Football this summer, someone who knows football. Someone who knows what they are doing. Woodward does a great job in bringing money to the club, but spending it, and spending it right seems to be a massive problem for him. Should that happen this summer, the club will be on the right track heading into the new season, but it will not work overnight. Patience will need to be afforded. Something which supporters have shown they do not have.

Manchester United Statistics (Domestic League):

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

Played 37 matches, won 18, drawn 9, lost 10 and currently have 63 points

Scored 46 goals (1.24 goals per match) and conceded 34 goals (0.92 goals per match)

Longest unbeaten streak is 7 matches

Clean sheets 49%

Bournemouth (Domestic League):

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

Played 37 matches, won 11, drawn 9, lost 17 and currently have 42 points

Scored 44 goals (1.19 goals per match) and conceded 64 goals (1.73 goals per match)

Longest unbeaten streak is 6 matches

Clean sheets 19%

Top Scorers (all competitions):

Manchester United: 17 – Anthony Martial, 14 – Wayne Rooney, 9 – Juan Mata, 7 – Memphis Depay, Marcus Rashford, 6 – Own Goal, Ander Herrera, Jesse Lingard, 4 – Marouane Fellaini, 2 – Daley Blind, Chris Smalling, 1 – Matteo Darmian, Adnan Januzaj, Andreas Pereira, Morgan Schneiderlin, Bastian Schweinsteiger

Bournemouth7 – Joshua King, 5 – Glenn Murray, Marc Pugh, Junior Stanislas, Callum Wilson, 4 – Benik Afobe, Steve Cook, Dan Gosling, Matt Ritchie, 3 – Charlie Daniels, 2 – Adam Smith, 1 – Harry Arter, Joe Bennett, Tommy Elphick, Lewis Grabban, Max Gradel, Yann Kermorgant, Shaun MacDonald

Manchester United Form: LWDWWW

Last Six Matches (all competitions): West Ham United 3-2 L, Norwich City 1-0 W, Leicester City 1-1 D, Everton 2-1 W, Crystal Palace 2-0 W, Aston Villa 1-0 W

Bournemouth Form: DLLLWL

Last Six Matches (all competitions): West Bromwich Albion 1-1 D, Everton 2-1 L, Chelsea 4-1 L, Liverpool 2-1 L, Aston Villa 2-1 W, Manchester City 4-0 L

Head to Head:

Played four matches in the FA Cup and League Cup at Old Trafford – the first time both clubs have met in the Premier League was earlier this season:

Manchester United: Won 4, Drawn 0, Lost 0; Goals Scored 12, Goals Conceded 0; Clean Sheets 4

Bournemouth: Won 0, Drawn 0, Lost 4; Goals Scored 0, Goals Conceded 12; Clean Sheets 0

Manchester United Squad:

Manager: Louis van Gaal

Goalkeepers: 1. David De Gea, 20. Sergio Romero, 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, 37. Donald Love, 38. Axel Tuanzebe, 41. Regan Poole, 43. Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, 49. Joe Riley;

Midfielders: 8. Juan Mata, 11. Adnan Januzaj, 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, 47. James Weir;

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

Doubts/Injuries: 3. Luke Shaw (broken leg), 11. Adnan Januzaj (knock), 18. Ashley Young (muscular injury), 31. Bastian Schweinsteiger (MCL knee ligament), 36. Matteo Darmian (ankle/foot), 49. Will Keane (groin) [injury details from PhysioRoom.com]

Suspensions: 27. Marouane Fellaini (two matches) [suspensions confirmed by the FA.com]

Bournemouth Squad:

Manager: Eddie Howe

Goalkeepers: 1. Artur Boruc, 21. Ryan Allsop, 23. Adam Federici;

Defenders: 2. Simon Francis, 3. Steve Cook, 5. Tommy Elphick, 11. Charlie Daniels, 14. Tyrone Mings, 15. Adam Smith, 22. Elliott Ward, 25. Sylvain Distin, 33. Joe Bennett, 38. Baily Cargill;

Midfielders: 4. Dan Gosling, 6. Andrew Surman, 7. Marc Pugh, 8. Harry Arter, 10. Max Gradel, 16. Shaun MacDonald, 19. Junior Stanislas, 20. Christian Atsu, 24. Lee Tomlin, 30. Matt Ritchie, 32. Eunan O’Kane;

Strikers: 9. Tokelo Rantie, 13. Callum Wilson, 17. Joshua King, 18. Yann Kermorgant, 27. Glenn Murray;

Doubts/Injuries: 14. Tyrone Mings (knee), 15. Adam Smith (inguinal hernia), 25. Sylvain Distin (back) [injury details from PhysioRoom.com]

Suspensions: None [suspensions confirmed by the FA]

Predicted Formation/Starting XI:

Score Prediction:

Manchester United 2-0 Bournemouth

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