Preview: United out to lift first trophy of the Ten Hag era by beating Newcastle in the Carabao Cup; Rashford out?

United still fight in four competitions this season but must win the Carabao Cup

Manchester United -v- Newcastle United

Carabao Cup Final

Wembley Stadium, London

Sunday 26 February 2023, KO 16:30 GMT

Manchester United travel to Wembley Stadium for the final of the Carabao Cup where they will take on Newcastle United. United and the Magpies have already met in the Premier League once this season, resulting in a 0-0 draw at Old Trafford back in October. They will meet at St James’ Park in April. United sit above Newcastle in the Premier League in third place, eight points clear although the Magpies have a game in hand and have dropped out of the top four.

United beat Aston Villa 4-2, Burnley 2-0, Charlton Athletic 3-0 and Nottingham Forest 3-0 and 2-0 (5-0 on aggregate) to reach the final of the Carabao Cup this season. Newcastle beat Tranmere Rovers 2-1, Crystal Palace 3-2 on penalties, Bournemouth 1-0, Leicester City 2-0 and Southampton 1-0 and 2-1 (3-1 on aggregate) to reach the Wembley final. United and the Magpies last met at Wembley in the 1998/99 FA Cup final with United winning 2-0 on the way to the treble.

This should be a good match for United, who will have played eight matches this month after the final with Newcastle playing half as many. United will be confident though after beating Barcelona 2-1 (4-3 on aggregate) in the UEFA Europa League play off round earning a round of 16 place where they will face Real Betis next month to continue to fight in all competitions. United are the only team to still be in four competitions and seeking to lift the first trophy of the season.

Manchester United – Form, Goals Scored & Assists

Barcelona 2-1 W, Leicester City 3-0 W, Barcelona 2-2 D, Leeds United 2-0 W, Leeds United 2-2 D, Crystal Palace 2-1 W

Goals: 24 – Marcus Rashford, 7 – Bruno Fernandes, 6 – Antony, Anthony Martial, 5 – Fred, Jadon Sancho, 4 – Casemiro, Own Goal, 3 – Alejandro Garnacho, Cristiano Ronaldo, 2 – Christian Eriksen, Scott McTominay, 1 – Diogo Dalot, Lisandro Martinez, Luke Shaw, Wout Weghorst

Assists: 9 – Christian Eriksen, Bruno Fernandes, 7 – Marcus Rashford, 5 – Casemiro, 4 – Alejandro Garnacho, Luke Shaw, 3 – Fred, 2 – Diogo Dalot, Anthony Elanga, Anthony Martial, Cristiano Ronaldo, 1 – Antony, Scott McTominay, Facundo Pellistri, Jadon Sancho, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Wout Weghorst

Newcastle United – Form, Goals Scored & Assists

Liverpool 2-0 L, Bournemouth 1-1 D, West Ham United 1-1 D, Southampton 2-1 W, Southampton 1-0 W, Crystal Palace 0-0 D

Goals: 10 – Miguel Almirón, 7 – Callum Wilson, 4 – Bruno Guimarães, Joelinton, 3 – Alexander Isak, Sean Longstaff, Chris Wood, 2 – Joe Willock, 1 – Dan Burn, Jamaal Lascelles, Jacob Murphy, Allan Saint-Maximin, Fabian Schär, Kieran Trippier

Assists: 6 – Kieran Trippier, 3 – Miguel Almirón, Bruno Guimarães, Sean Longstaff, Allan Saint-Maximin, Callum Wilson, 2 – Joelinton, Joe Willock, 1 – Alexander Isak, Jacob Murphy

Previous Meetings & Connections

United and Newcastle have met each other 174 times competitively since their first met back in 1895. United have won 90 times, drawn 41 and lost 43 times. United have not lost to Newcastle since that terrible 1-0 defeat back in October 2019 with Matty Longstaff scoring the only goal of the game. Six matches have been played since then with United winning the first four and drawing the other two. 16 goals were scored, five conceded with one clean sheet.

United have met Newcastle nine times in cup competition with two meeting in the FA Community Shield – winning both; four meetings in the FA Cup; one a final – winning all of them and three meeting in the League Cup – winning two and losing one. The last time United and Newcastle met in contention for a trophy was the FA Cup final in the 1998/99 season which United won 2-0 at the old Wembley with Teddy Sheringham and Paul Scholes scoring the goals.

Peter Beardsley, Keith Gillespie, Andy Cole, Ronny Johnsen, Nicky Butt, Guiseppe Rossi, Danny Simpson, Alan Smith, Louis Saha, Gabriel Obertan and Michael Owen have all played for both United and Newcastle. Cole is perhaps the most effective signing of the lot, although Owen and Smith both did well for United. Butt and Saha worked well for United though. Newcastle fans still seem happy that Alan Shearer chose them over United – he relegated them!

Team News

Donny van de Beek and Christian Eriksen are the only long-term absentees for United with the Dutchman out for the remainder of the season after having knee surgery and the Danish international out until late April/early May with an ankle injury. Erik ten Hag has ruled Anthony Martial out of the Carabao Cup final this weekend with his returning to individual training earlier this week and not likely to be fit enough to face Newcastle. That leaves United short in attacking players.

Marcus Rashford is a big doubt at the moment after he came off in the second half against Barcelona at Old Trafford on Thursday evening and has an ankle injury with Ten Hag remaining coy on whether the in form forward will be part of the squad which travels to London to face Newcastle in Sunday’s final. United have been boosted with the likes of Antony, Scott McTominay and Casemiro returning to the squad recently after injury and suspension. United will be up for this.

Emil Krafth has been ruled out of the Carabao Cup final on Sunday with a knee injury. Joelinton has a 75% chance of recovering in time to face United after a thigh injury with Joseph Willock having a 50% chance of recovery from the same ailment. Bruno Guimaraes has been suspended for the last three matches and will be back in action for the Magpies but goalkeeper Nick Pope is suspended for the final and Martin Dubravka is cup tied after featuring for United.

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

De Gea;

Dalot, Varane, Martinez, Shaw;

Casemiro, Sabitzer;

Antony, Fernandes, Rashford;

Weghorst

Predicted Newcastle United Starting XI – 4-3-3

Karius;

Trippier, Schär, Botman, Burn;

Longstaff, Guimarães, Joelinton;

Almirón, Wilson, Saint-Maximin

Match Prediction

I don’t think that Newcastle United are a good team. If you look at their form this season, even in the fact they have played half of the matches (four) that United will have played this month (eight) after Sunday’s Carabao Cup final, you will see that they have only beaten teams in the Carabao Cup recently. Their form in the Premier League has seen them either lose or draw with their last win going back to the 15 January with a 1-0 victory over Fulham.

Supporters of the club seem to think they are the best thing since sliced bread and continue to mock United for the fact that Alan Shearer chose them over United all those years ago. If you have to look that far back to find something good, other than the fact he was also the guy that relegated Newcastle, it is clear there is no current success to be seen anywhere. Newcastle are somewhat of a joke for me. They pretend to be massive but are just mediocre at best.

Kevin Keegan’s reaction when United replaced that at the top of the table that season was great and it should be bragged about more that Manchester United broke him, which was hilarious at the time. But there will be people that will suggest it was not the case – it was. Newcastle have some good players but in terms of getting the better of United this weekend at Wembley, they will have to be at the top of their game. I just don’t think they have it in the bag to do that.

Manchester United 3-0 Newcastle United

Written by John Walker


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About editor 2168 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.