Mason Greenwood to start against Cardiff City? 4-3-3 formation with Chong, Pereira and McTominay giving Manchester United a youthful look in Premier League finale

Manchester United will host already-relegated Cardiff City at Old Trafford on Sunday in the final Premier League match of the season. Both teams are in poor form but United, who will be embarking on another rebuilding process this summer, will be seeking to end the season with a bit of a high, despite the poor form, playing style and lack ability, determination and desire of late.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be boosted with the fact that Mike Phelan has committed to the cause for three years in signing a new contract as the clubs assistant manager but there is plenty of work for both ahead of what will be seen as a busy summer. Beating Cardiff is necessary to end the season with better intentions which the supporters deserve.

This Sunday, the only races in the Premier League will be between Manchester City and Liverpool for the title and between Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal to finish inside the top four. United could, of course, finish fifth in the league this season with a win over Cardiff, however, Arsenal will need to draw or lose against Burnley for that to happen.

Manchester United and Cardiff City have played 30 competitive matches. United has won the most matches with 15 victories, drawing eight and losing just seven times. United are unbeaten against Cardiff in their last eight matches, going back to 1961. United beat Cardiff 5-1 earlier in the season, Solskjaer’s first match as manager.

Goalkeeper: David De Gea

The Spanish number one has not been in the best of form for the past two months or so but needs to see this season out. The summer will be a welcome break for him as he gets to literally take time out from the game, although Spain face both the Faroe Islands (7 June) and Sweden (10 June) in European Championships qualifiers, which may scupper any early holiday plans, if he is going to be part of the squad, of course.

Defence: Diogo Dalot, Victor Lindelof, Chris Smalling, Luke Shaw

The defence needs some strengthening this summer as I don’t have much faith in Phil Jones or Marcos Rojo and Eric Bailly’s injuries over the past two seasons have become problematic. However, with this being the final match of the season, having Diogo Dalot and Luke Shaw as the fullbacks would be welcome with both Victor Lindelof and Chris Smalling forming a partnership in the centre of defence, which at this stage is the best partnership the club could muster.

Midfield: Andreas Pereira, Scott McTominay, Ander Herrera

I would like to see players who want to wear their Manchester United shirts, fight for the crest on the front of the shirt, also showing the desire and determination to succeed. Based on this, I don’t want to see Paul Pogba in the squad to face Cardiff City. Solskjaer should trust Andreas Pereira, Scott McTominay and Ander Herrera to fortify the midfield, which should add more to the team instead of the petulance Pogba has brought with every recent appearance for the club.

Forwards: Tahith Chong, Mason Greenwood, Marcus Rashford

Solskjaer confirmed that some youth players will start in this game. One of them should be Mason Greenwood who has been waiting for his opportunity at this level but missed it last week due to injury. He is a player that Solskjaer rates and feels that he has the attributes to succeed in his squad. Tahith Chong should start on the right with Marcus Rashford on the left, as I don’t particularly want to see Anthony Martial or Alexis Sanchez (although both seem to be injured) playing in this match. They do not deserve to start or occupy a place on the bench. Rashford needs to sort himself out too, showing his ability more for United.

Substitutes: Sergio Romero; Phil Jones, Antonio Valencia; Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard, Fred, Angel Gomes,

I might not be right based on the substitutes but we shall see when the team news comes out on Sunday. One thing is for sure, Antonio Valencia will be seeking a good farewell from the Theatre of Dreams. I don’t think he will be fit enough to start but could play a part in the game, maybe coming on for the last 25 minutes or so. Juan Mata could also be a player saying his goodbyes as his contract is up in the summer and he does not seem to want to sign the contract he has been offered by the club. I would like to see more of Angel Gomes in this match, playing with Chong and Greenwood could suit him. It would be great to see James Garner too but I don’t think he will be included in the squad, sadly.

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