Preview: United need to bounce back and beat Sheriff ahead of final group match showdown with Real Sociedad

United will need to score goals galore to claw back Sociedad's goal difference

Manchester United -v- Sheriff Tiraspol

UEFA Europa League

Old Trafford, Manchester

Thursday 27 October 2022, KO 20:00 BST

Manchester United welcome Sheriff Tiraspol to Old Trafford five days after the 1-1 draw against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Saturday. Casemiro opened his goalscoring account with United in the last minute of the match after United conceded a penalty.

It showed that United’s mentality as a team is changing and they will do all they can to get the results, which is a good corner to turn after the last few seasons of this squad. Sheriff will be led by a new manager after Stjepan Tomas tendered his resignation following a defeat to Petrocub.

United need just a point to progress out of their UEFA Europa League group this season but will be seeking to win their last two matches, beating Sheriff and Real Sociedad so they can top the group ahead of the season entering a break for the FIFA World Cup in Qatar next month.

Manchester United – Form, Goals Scored & Assists

Chelsea 1-1 D, Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 W, Newcastle United 0-0 D, Omonia Nicosia 1-0 W, Everton 2-1 W, Omonia Nicosia 3-2 W

Goals: 5 – Marcus Rashford, 3 – Antony, Anthony Martial, Jadon Sancho, 2 – Bruno Fernandes, Cristiano Ronaldo, 1 – Casemiro, Fred, Own Goal, Scott McTominay

Assists: 3 – Christian Eriksen, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford, 1 – Casemiro, Diogo Dalot, Anthony Elanga, Bruno Fernandes, Cristiano Ronaldo, Jadon Sancho, Luke Shaw

Sheriff Tiraspol – Form, Goals Scored & Assists

Petrocub 1-0 L, Speranta Drochia 6-0 W, FC Balti 2-1 W, Real Sociedad 3-0 L, Dinamo-Auto 1-0 W, Real Sociedad 2-0 L

Goals: 7 – Rasheed Akanbi, 4 – Steve Ambri, 3 – Iyayi Atiemwen, Giannis-Fivos Botos, 2 – Mouhamed Diop, Gaby Kiki, Abou Ouattara, Felipe Vizeu, 1 – Danil Ankudinov, Adrian Hatman, Danila Ignatov, Keston Julien, Pernambuco, Kay Tejan, Momo Yansane

Assists: 3 – Rasheed Akanbi, Iyayi Atiemwen, Cedric Badolo, 2 – Regi Lushkja, Abou Ouattara, Charles Petro, 1 – Steve Ambri, Nichita Covali, Renan Guedes, Keston Julien, Maksym Koval, Pernambuco, Felipe Vizeu

Previous Meetings & Connections

United and Sheriff have played just once in the history of both clubs. United won that match with Jadon Sancho, assisted by Christian Eriksen scoring the first goal and Cristiano Ronaldo scoring his 699th club career goal from the penalty spot. Of course, he now had 700.

United could afford to rest some of their players in this match, with it being played at Old Trafford and with United entertaining West Ham United at the Theatre of Dreams in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon, the lack of any travelling will aid United.

Sheriff’s exploits in the UEFA Champion League last season seem to be behind them this season with it likely that they will fall into the UEFA Europa Conference League later this season, although if Omonia get any points against Real Sociedad and beat Sheriff, that won’t happen.

Team News

Raphael Varane and Axel Tuanzebe have both been ruled out through injury so will not face Sheriff on Thursday evening. Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Harry Maguire and Donny van de Beek all returned to training on Tuesday, but may not be fully fit for this match.

Anthony Martial has been missing with a lower back injury since the 2-1 victory over Everton when he was substituted before the half hour mark of the match. He has missed four matches and could well be out of this one too as he did not participate in training with the squad on Tuesday.

Armel Zohouri is suspended the the visit to the Theatre of Dreams after being sent off (two yellow cards) in the 3-0 defeat to Real Sociedad three weeks ago. Moussa Kyabou and Iyayi Atiemwen both served suspensions in the match against Sociedad so will be eligible for this match.

Predicted Manchester United Starting XI – 4-2-3-1

Dubravka;

Dalot, Lindelof, Martinez, Malacia;

Casemiro, Eriksen;

Antony, Fernandes, Rashford;

Ronaldo

Predicted Sheriff Tiraspol Starting XI – 3-5-2

Celeadnic;

Evangelou, Radeljic, Kiki;

Guedes, Badolo, Salifu, Diop, Kpozo;

Pernambuco, Akanbi

Match Prediction

United will need to be at the top of their game to get a win in this match. Sheriff were not all that good in the match in Moldova back in September. United won the match 2-0 with both Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo (penalty) scoring the goals.

United need just a point to make it to the knockout stages of the Europa League this season but they will be seeking to win this match and beat Real Sociedad in a bid to top the group, so they will need to score some goals, sitting four behind Sociedad in terms of goal difference.

That said, if United score against Sociedad, they will reduce their goal difference, so scoring three or more at Old Trafford will be the desired result in this match, giving United a chance to top the group providing they beat the Spanish side, which is entirely possible.

Manchester United 3-0 Sheriff Tiraspol

Written by John Walker

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About John Walker 1822 Articles
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.