Preview: Solskjaer set to keep United victorious with trip to Burnley in final fixture of 2019

Burnley -v- Manchester United

Premier League

Turf Moor, Burnley

Saturday 28 December 2019, KO 19:45 GMT

Referee: Mike Dean Assistants: Ian Hussin; Darren Cann Fourth Official: Anthony Taylor 

VAR: Michael Oliver Assistant VAR: Lee Betts

Manchester United will be back in Premier League action against Burnley at Turf Moor just over 48 hours after leaving the pitch after thumping Newcastle United 4-1 at Old Trafford. The good thing is that is it not a huge distance to travel with the Reds heading about 46 miles from Manchester for the Saturday evening kick off. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be seeking to keep his team on a winning run.

It is the last fixture of 2019 for United and 2020 will start with an away trip to Arsenal, who under new manager, Mikel Arteta do not seem to have changed much after enduring a 1-1 draw away to Bournemouth. Before that though, Burnley lie in wait fresh from their 1-0 defeat to Everton, who also had a new manager take charge of a match with Carlo Ancelotti coming in just before Christmas.

It will be a tough final match of 2019 and Solskjaer will be seeking a victory away from home. United last won away from home in the Manchester derby, beating Manchester City 2-1 on the 7 December, in the same week they beat Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur, which could have changed the season had they been able to beat Everton (1-1 draw) and Watford (2-0 defeat). Let’s end 2019 in style, with another win. Come on United!

Form: United the team in better form with four wins, one draw and one defeat in the last six matches. Burnley have four defeats and two draws. They have not beaten United for just over a decade. Could this be an omen?

Manchester United: WLWDWW

Newcastle United 4-1 W, Watford 2-0 L, Colchester United 3-0 W, Everton 1-1 D, AZ Alkmaar 4-0 W, Manchester City 2-1 W

Burnley: LWWLLL

Everton 1-0 L, Bournemouth 1-0 W, Newcastle United 1-0 W, Tottenham Hotspur 5-0 L, Manchester City 4-1 L, Crystal Palace 2-0 L

Top Scorers: 46 goals scored by United this season with Marcus Rashford leading with 15 goals in all competitions. Burnley have scored just 23 goals this season, half the amount of United.

Manchester United Goals: 15 – Marcus Rashford, 9 – Anthony Martial, 8 – Mason Greenwood, 3 – Daniel James, Scott McTominay, 2 – Own Goal, 1 – Victor Lindelof, Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata, Andreas Pereira, Brandon Williams, Ashley Young

United have climbed up to seventh in the Premier League following their 4-1 victory over Newcastle United, a team that frustrated them, beating them at St James’ Park back in October. Solskjaer’s side managed to overcome their 2-0 defeat to Watford just before Christmas and put themselves just four point from the top four and ten points from third. Granted, United should have been better placed if recent results had been different. Can they finally turn a corner?

Burnley Goals: 7 – Chris Wood, 6 – Ashley Barnes, 4 – Jay Rodriguez, 2 – Jeff Hendrick, 1 – Robbie Brady, Johann Gudmundsson, Dwight McNeil, James Tarkowski

Burnley currently sit twelfth in the Premier League table, four points adrift of United, who sit in seventh. Burnley have scored half the number of goals United have this season and in their last six matches, they have been beaten four times, winning just two matches; against Bournemouth and Newcastle. It has been more than a decade since Burnley last beat United and in the last nine matches played, United have won five and drawn four. Burnley have it all to win in this game.

Team News: Scott McTominay could be out of action for a prolonged period with suspected knee ligament damage – time will tell how long he will be out for.

United might be without Scott McTominay for a prolonged period of time after Solskjaer suggested that the player could have sustain knee ligament damage in the 4-1 victory over Newcastle United on Boxing Day. Solskjaer also looks set to be without Eric Bailly, Tim Fosu-Mensah, Marcos Rojo, and Axel Tuanzebe for the visit to Turf Moor on Saturday evening. With the midfield lacking players the likes of James Garner and Dylan Levitt may also be included in the squad for the match.

Burnley manager Sean Dyche could be without Ben Gibson and Aaron Lennon through injury and illness but Jeff Hendrick, who was suspended from the defeat to Everton on Boxing Day, is once again eligible to play after amassing five yellow cards so far this season. This could be a tough match for Burnley after United’s confidence would seemingly be high after their 4-1 victory over Newcastle United on Boxing Day.

Predicted Starting XI: Two changes from the Newcastle team to face Burnley; McTominay missing from the squad due to suspected injury.

Given the number of players on the sidelines through injury, I don’t think Solskjaer will make many changes for the visit to Burnley on Saturday evening. Around 48 after leaving the pitch at Old Trafford, the squad will be playing 46 miles away in Burnley. The fact that Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial were substituted around the hour mark against Newcastle will be a good thing, as will Daniel James being rested as an unused substitute.

Match Prediction: United unbeaten against Burnley in the last nine matches going more than a decade without defeat home and away.

United and Burnley have played a total of 128 matches in this history of both clubs with the first match being played in 1892. United have won 61 times, drawn 23 times and lost 44 times. The last defeat to Burnley came in the Premier League back in August 2009, a 1-0 defeat at Turf Moor with Robbie Blake scoring the only goal of the game. Prior to that match, United were on a 17 match unbeaten run against Burnley.

In the nine matches that have been played between United and Burnley since the last defeat more than a decade ago, United are undefeated winning five times and drawing four times. In this fixture last season, United win 2-0 at Turf Moor with former United striker Romelu Lukaku scoring a brace in the game. In the reverse fixture at Old Trafford, it was a 2-2 draw with Ashley Barnes and Chris Wood putting Burnley 2-0 up with Paul Pogba and Victor Lindelof scoring two goals in three minutes.

Burnley 1-3 Manchester United

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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.