Manchester United -v- Istanbul Basaksehir
UEFA Champions League
Old Trafford, Manchester
Tuesday 24 November 2020, KO 20:00 GMT
Referee: Ovidiu Haţegan Assistants: Octavian Șovre, Sebastian Gheorghe
Fourth Official: Marius Avram
VAR: Christian Dingert Assistant VAR: João Pinheiro
Manchester United will be back in UEFA Champions League action when they welcome Istanbul Basaksehir to Old Trafford on Tuesday evening. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will be seeking to get back to winning ways in the competition after a 2-1 away defeat in the group stage almost three weeks ago. In Istanbul, United looked disjointed and lost their concentration twice in the match which resulted in two sloppy goals for the home side. United will need to be at the top of their game to face the Turkish champions, who have seemingly fallen in stature in the Super Lig this season, losing their last two matches, which means nothing in this competition.
At this moment in time, United are top of their group with six points after three matches, sitting in that position on goal difference with them being seven goals ahead of second placed RB Leipzig. United will need to beat the Turkish side this time to keep their top spot in the group with two matches remaining, which will be the more difficult matches, at least on paper, despite United looking comfortable in the victories over Paris Saint-Germain and Leipzig in their first two group stage matches. PSG only have three points in the three matches they have played, which is not good for them, especially after reaching the final last season.
Manchester United: WWLLWD
West Bromwich Albion 1-0 W, Everton 3-1 W, Istanbul Basaksehir 2-1 L, Arsenal 1-0 L, RB Leipzig 5-0 W, Chelsea 0-0 D
Istanbul Basaksehir: LLWWWL
Beşiktaş 3-2 L, İstanbulspor 3-1 L, Gençlerbirliği S.K. 2-1 W, Manchester United 2-1 W, Konyaspor 2-1 W, Paris Saint-Germain 2-0 L
Top Scorers: Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford have seven goals a piece in all competitions this season for United with Edin Visca and Fredrik Gulbrandsen having for a piece for the Turkish side.
Manchester United Goals: 7 – Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, 2 – Anthony Martial, Juan Mata, Mason Greenwood, 1 – Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Donny van de Beek, Edinson Cavani, Harry Maguire, Own Goal, Paul Pogba, Scott McTominay
Since the last match between these two teams, when United were unfortunately caught napping and lost 2-1, they have turned around their form with a 3-1 victory away to Everton and a 1-0 home victory over West Bromwich Albion, which was United’s first home victory of the season in the Premier League. United will need to be wary of the Turkish side, who showed United that they were not to be underestimated. United should have seen the warning with the 2-1 defeat in the third match of the group stages, so they should aim to turn that around with another three points in the bag in this match, which should strengthen their position.
Istanbul Basaksehir Goals: 4 – Edin Visca, Fredrik Gulbrandsen, 3 – Irfan Kahveci, 2 – Demba Ba, Enzo Crivelli, Guiliano de Paula, Mehmet Topal, 1 – Danijel Aleksic, Own Goal
The Turkish side beat United in their first match against them, winning 2-1 at home. Now they travel to the Theatre of Dreams, which should be a different story for the side. The Turks are not in the same form as United, having played three matches since facing United, winning once and losing twice – their last two matches. It might have knocked their confidence a little, especially being the reigning champions of Turkey and sitting in sixth place in the league with 13 points after nine matches being played so far this season. They will have belief that they can beat United, as they did three weeks ago, but United need to be much better.
Team News: United without three players for the clash against the Turks, who could be missing at least four players for the trip to Old Trafford.
United will still be without Phil Jones (knee), Luke Shaw (thigh) and Jesse Lingard (other) for the match against Istanbul Basaksehir on Tuesday evening. Eric Bailly (muscular) returned to training last week and has 25% chance of being available for this match. Paul Pogba missed the West Bromwich Albion victory with a knock and has a 50% chance of being involved in this match and Mason Greenwood, also not involved at the weekend, also has a 50% chance of being available for this match. Edinson Cavani could make his first start for United against the Turkish side with United needing more luck up front at this stage of the season.
The Turkish side could be without both Enzo Crivelli and Junior Caicara with both players having muscular injury ahead of the match against United at Old Trafford. Mert Günok and Danijel Aleksić could also be out for this match after testing positive for coronavirus, according to Transfermarkt. Muhammed Senegezer is out of action with a shoulder injury, but he had not been named in the Champions League squad for his club this season, because of the injury. Former United right-back, Rafael da Silva could represent the opposition for the first time at the Theatre of Dreams, which is something he will relish, even without supporters.
Predicted Starting XI: Edinson Cavani to lead the line for United? Supported by Daniel James, Mason Greenwood, Bruno Fernandes and Donny van de Beek?
Solskjaer will start to see the pressure lift as players become available to play for United, especially in defence, which has seen United left with barebones, especially in the central positions with Eric Bailly injury, Phil Jones not added to the squad and Marcos Rojo seemingly out of favour. Alex Telles will be happy that he made his Premier League debut this weekend, playing his second match for United in a month. Creatively, Bruno Fernandes is the GOAT for United but finishing chances is a problem at this moment in time – something that Edinson Cavani could change – hopefully. United need to find the system that works and works well for them.
Match Prediction: United have done well against Turkish sides at Old Trafford in Europe, playing eight, winning five, drawing once and losing twice. A victory on Tuesday will make the final two matches that little bit easier.
United and Istanbul Basaksehir have played once with the Turkish side winning that match. The club had only played Burnley in European competition before the match three weeks ago, drawing 0-0 in Istanbul and losing 1-0 at Turf Moor which saw the Lancashire club reach the play-off round of the UEFA Europe League in the 2018/19 season, failing to qualify for the group stages of the competition after losing to Olympiakos. United have met Galatasaray, Fenerbahçe, Beşiktaş, and Bursaspor from Turkey, playing 16 matches in the Europa League and Champions League, winning eight, drawing three and losing five.
United have met Galatasaray and Fenerbahçe six times each and Beşiktaş and Bursaspor two times each. The last Turkish club to face United was Fenerbahçe in the Europa League in the 2016/17 season where they met in the group stages of the competition, at the time welcoming Robin van Persie back to Old Trafford a year after his departure from the club. United won 4-1 at Old Trafford, losing 2-1 in Istanbul. United tend to do much better at Old Trafford against Turkish sides; playing eight matches, winning five, drawing once and losing twice. United need another win at home against a Turkish side to get back on track this season.
Manchester United 2-0 Istanbul Basaksehir
Written by John Walker