Confirmed XI: United v Watford – Elanga starts; Ronaldo leads the line; Maguire on the bench

United need to send Watford packing to keep up their top four hopes

Manchester United return to action in the Premier League where they will welcome Watford to Old Trafford this afternoon. United and Watford were both in action on Wednesday with United drawing 1-1 with Atletico Madrid and Watford falling to a 4-1 defeat to Crystal Palace.

Ralf Rangnick’s side will need to get back to winning ways in the Premier League to keep their assault on a top four finish this season alive. In the past three matches, United had won twice and drawn once with Rangnick defeated only twice so far, one on penalties.

At the time of writing, Watford sit 19th in the league with just 18 points from 25 matches, which puts them in a relegation battle that at they might not get out of. Burnley sit in 18th place with 20 points but have two games in hand over both Watford and Norwich City – who are at the bottom.

United sit in fourth place in the league at this stage, having replaced West Ham United, who have four points fewer after 26 matches being played by both teams. United could see Arsenal challenge as they have three games in hand and are four points behind United.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Varane, Telles;

Fred, Matic;

Elanga, Fernandes, Pogba;



Henderson; Jones, Maguire, Dalot, Shaw; Mata, Lingard; Rashford, Sancho



Nakia, Cathcart, Samir, Kamara;

Sissoko, Louza, Cleverley;

Sarr, King, Dennis


Bachmann; Troost-Ekong, Masina, Kabasele; Sema, Kucka, Kayembe; Pedro, Hernandez

United and Watford have met a total of 15 times in the Premier League. United have won 12 times, drawing no matches with Watford winning three times. United have scored 32 goals, winning two penalties, scoring both. Watford have scored 18 goals, winning five penalties, scoring four.

United have kept five clean sheets in these fixtures with Watford keeping one. Discipline is a problem with United played shown 22 yellow cards and three red cards and Watford players shown 26 yellow cards and two red cards.

Danny Webber, Chris Eagles, James Garner, Reece Brown, Tomasz Kuszczak, Danny Drinkwater, Craig Cathcart, Tom Cleverley, Ben Foster, Jimmy Davies, Odion Ighalo, Joshua King, Ashley Fletcher and Danny Welbeck have all played for United and Watford.

Foster, Brown, Drinkwater, Davies, Eagles, Webber, Cathcart, Cleverley, King, Welbeck and Fletcher all came through United’s academy before leaving, some before featuring for the first team. Young and Ighalo played for Watford before United and Garner is the only player still owned by United.

Written by John Walker

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I support Manchester United, the greatest English football team to have ever existed. Bruno Fernandes is the latest in a long line of players with great ability to play for the club. I idolised Bryan Robson, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, and Eric Cantona growing up.