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Preview: Romelu Lukaku must score against Everton for Manchester United to get out of the rut they are in

Manchester United -v- Everton

Premier League

Old Trafford, Manchester

Sunday 28 October 2018; KO 16:00 GMT

Referee: Jonathan Moss

Manchester United will be tasked with returning to winning ways against Everton at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon in the Premier League. On Tuesday in the UEFA Champions League, Juventus were the victors in the group stage clash at the Theatre of Dreams. United were toothless and lacked ambition, urgency and any ability these footballers once had. Jose Mourinho is not getting the best out of his team and the excuses are becoming tiresome.

The players need to understand that the millionaire lifestyles that they enjoy have not been earned. There are so few players in the team who want to fight for the badge on the front of the shirt, many seemingly want to play for the name on the back, which has not been great over the last few months. United have been slagged off from pillar to post in the media after going four matches without a win.

A momentum was built with the 3-2 victory over Newcastle United, after going 2-0 early in the first half of the game. United then faced Chelsea, just after the international break, which was sandwiched in between the two matches, leading 2-1 into added time, conceding a late equaliser. It was a good result at Stamford Bridge but could have been better. Juventus rolled up into Manchester earlier in the week. Some fans were positive, most were thinking of the destruction United could face.

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Pre-Match Thoughts: With owners who care little about anything other than money, there is an inevitable ‘train crash’ coming…

The Juventus game was very unpleasant for United supporters. The club has no fight right now. There does not seem to be any quick fix for the problems. These players have lost their ability to play the game to an acceptable standard. The tactics are negative, promoting dull football with a team that has no attacking prowess. We have been here before in the last five and a half years and we will be here again.

The ownership of the club is toxic, as is the fact that the executive vice-chairman does not have a footballing brain or the thought process that would allow a football team to thrive. Money, money, money seems to be the main aim. Bring in as much as you can, make the owners happy. Forget about everything that made Manchester United Football Club a prominent club in the history of football.

Most will know that if you forget about your roots, the identity you have will change. Right now, United have owners who are trying to milk every penny out of the club that they can, not caring if the future of the club is at risk. I guess when you buy a club, without a penny of your own money, plunging the club into debt and living off money which is being taken out of the club, it clearly shows that you care little about the past, present, or the future of the club.

The Glazer must go, but they are happy like a vulture stripping a carcass of its meat, which will mean they will remain and carry this club, or what is left of it into the next part of their reign, which will, of course, involve taking as much money out of the club as possible, forgetting about the institution it used to be and continuing to paint over the cracks, which in turn will make the final collapse a fatal one.

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Team News: Alexis Sanchez out again but Romelu Lukaku will most likely continue to lead the line, hindering United…

Jose Mourinho has confirmed that Alexis Sanchez will remain sidelined for the clash with Everton on Sunday. Jesse Lingard, who has been sidelined with a muscle injury for the last five matches, could be back in action, as could Scott McTominay, who has been linked with a possible loan move in the New Year. Marouane Fellaini and Diogo Dalot may still be absent as the manager waits to see if either has recovered for this match.

Romelu Lukaku is a player who is not in form right now. Failing to score a goal in his last eight matches for United. A match against his former club will add more pressure to him, which could go one of two ways; continuing his poor form, or finding the back of the net. I have been less than impressed with the Belgian recently. He seems to be more of a hindrance than a help right now. However, this could be the game he finds the back of the net, which can be used for each game until he does…

For Everton, James McCarthy has back in full training after suffering a double leg fracture earlier in the year. Summer signing Yerry Mina is back in contention too, which will be the first time he has faced United, a team he was linked with during the summer. Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Cenk Tosun may both think they have done enough to play against United, both were instrumental in the victory over Crystal Palace last weekend. Former Red Devils Michael Keane and Morgan Schneiderlin could also play a part.

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Predicted Starting XI: Romelu Lukaku to lead the line again, if he does not perform, again, he will have to be dropped sooner, rather than later…

Romelu Lukaku will keep his place. Based on what Mourinho has said about him and that his next game could be where he scores, the manager has not lost faith with his striker. The longer it continues though could see the Belgian on the bench. The longer he is not scoring the goals, the longer United’s bad form is going to continue. Lukaku scored many goals at Everton but at United, scoring goals is not all he has to do. He’s not a Wayne Rooney-like player and needs to play to the best of his abilities.

Juan Mata should keep his place in the team as he is one of the players who has been putting in the effort. His pace on the right-wing has shown that he’s not the player to play there. Playing in the number ten role is more suited to him, and has been for a number of years now. The midfield lacks steel and the ability to play fluid and fast attacking football. Nemanja Matic has been slow of late but he’s also another player willing to do what is needed to get the best out of the team, although that seems unlikely.

Match Prediction: Manchester United must win but it seems that is something lost of this team these days…

Jose Mourinho needs his team to beat Everton. The poor result against Juventus and that late equaliser for Chelsea hit United for six, even after momentum was built by overcoming Newcastle before the international break. Winning is what United must do. Sitting in tenth place currently, which will change, for the worst, before United kick a ball on Sunday, means that winning is the only option. Everton started well this season and they will want to win too.

Old Trafford started to become a fortress last season, this season, it is a place where the opposition picks up points. United have lost to Tottenham Hotspur (3-0), a draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers (1-1), a draw and penalty defeat to Derby County (2-2), 7-8 on penalties, a draw against Valencia (0-0), and the defeat to Juventus (1-0). United have played two more matches at the Theatre of Dreams this season, Leicester City (2-1) and Newcastle United (3-2). Winning two out of seven is bad.

Manchester United 2-1 Everton

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