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Starting XI Prediction: Rashford to lead the line? Lingard, Mata and Martial to support? Pogba on the bench?

Manchester United face the toughest match of the season so far with their visit to take on Liverpool at Anfield in the Premier League. United sit sixth in the league table, eight points adrift of fifth-placed Arsenal who will face Southampton before United’s game. That could see United around 11 points behind Arsenal, should they win, meaning United will need to ensure they leave Anfield with three points, which could be a problem.

United have been less than convincing this season, even during their 4-1 victory over Fulham last weekend. However, in Valencia midweek, the real United came forth again, showing a lacklustre display which included the top reds first-choice midfield which was suggested to be the best on offer at the club this season. They failed miserably. What works on FIFA 19 doesn’t necessarily work in real life, I guess.

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Goalkeeper: David De Gea

The Spanish number one is obviously the first name on the teamsheet. It has been suggested this week that a new contract is forthcoming, which will see the player remain at the club for the peak of his career. Sergio Romero did alright in midweek, considering he does not play football regularly, but De Gea is the only real option when United are facing big clubs like Liverpool. I’d love to see a clean sheet in this game, also seeing United score. I know, right!

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Defence: Diogo Dalot, Eric Bailly, Chris Smalling, Luke Shaw

Jose Mourinho needs to find the best defensive lineup from his squad but with injuries, there is going to be a lot of rotation. Diogo Dalot, who has returned from injury, needs to play in his favoured right-back role, keeping Antonio Valencia out of the team, which is for the best. Having Luke Shaw in the left-back role is needed too. Chris Smalling has made himself available for this game, as has Victor Lindelof but I think Smalling will partner Eric Bailly.

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Midfield: Ander Herrera, Nemanja Matic

I feel that United will revert to a midfield two against Liverpool, having both Nemanja Matic and Ander Herrera. Paul Pogba has not been putting in the performances for United recently and after the criticism that he has faced, I personally believe that he has not done enough to start against Liverpool. The Frenchman is United’s most expensive signing, costing £89 million. Until he plays like he wants to be at the club, the bench should beckon for him.

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Attacking Midfield: Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata, Anthony Martial

United’s attack has not been great this season. The lack of chances being created, then those chances being taken has been tiresome. In the past few matches, Jesse Lingard has been one of the standout players in terms of showing the desire and hunger in getting the team forward and attacking. Juan Mata has shown that despite his age, he still has a place at the club. Anthony Martial, fresh from a return after injury, will be tacked with sinking Liverpool. A good game needed.

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Striker: Marcus Rashford

Romelu Lukaku has been dire this season. In the end, it may pay off for him but United cannot risk starting him. Marcus Rashford has scored more goals recently and his hunger and desire have been impressive. Playing his as the lone striker may not be ideal, especially when you have a player like Lukaku on the bench. However, form is everything in games like this and United need a win more than another match where the striker’s first touch never gets better.

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