Manchester United -v- Norwich City
Old Trafford, Manchester
Saturday 16 April 2022, KO 15:00 GMT
Referee: Andy Madley – Assistants: Simon Beck, Adrian Holmes
Fourth Official: Jonathan Moss
VAR: Mike Dean – Assistant VAR: Scott Ledger
Manchester United welcome Norwich City to Old Trafford in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon in a match that supporters will be demanding a raise in game from. United have been poor in 2022 and do not seem to be getting much better, neither wanting to.
The Old Trafford club look set to miss out on UEFA Champions League during the 2022/23 season, which will be a hammer blow to the Glazers who love earning money for the club but seem to hate the club earning the plaudits on the pitch. If only they understood football.
The American owners seem to use United as a cash cow, milking it as much as they can. But ensuring that the club were competitive, taking on the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City in the Premier League, they would be earning money but they don’t seem to want to stump up cash.
The club is on the cusp of yet another manager and a new rebuilding process which is just going to result in the same problems time and time again unless football men, with experience are doing the work, which will probably never be the case. The decline of this football club is criminal.
Manchester United – Recent Form, Goals Scored and Assists: LDLWLD
Everton 1-0 L, Leicester City 1-1 D, Atletico Madrid 1-0 L, Tottenham Hotspur 3-2 W, Manchester City 4-1 L, Watford 0-0 D
Goals: 18 – Cristiano Ronaldo, 9 – Bruno Fernandes, 6 – Mason Greenwood, 5 – Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho, 4 – Fred, 3 – Anthony Elanga, 2 – Edinson Cavani, Jesse Lingard, Harry Maguire, Scott McTominay, 1 – Own Goal, Anthony Martial, Paul Pogba, Alex Telles, Donny van de Beek
Assists: 14 – Bruno Fernandes, 9 – Paul Pogba, 5 – Fred, Luke Shaw, 3 – Cristiano Ronaldo, Jadon Sancho, 2 – Mason Greenwood, Victor Lindelof, Nemanja Matic, Marcus Rashford, Alex Telles, 1 – Edinson Cavani, Jesse Lingard, Scott McTominay, Raphael Varane
Norwich City – Recent Form, Goals Scored and Assists: WDLLLL
Burnley 2-0 W, Brighton and Hove Albion 0-0 D, Leeds United 2-1 L, Chelsea 3-1 L, Brentford 3-1 L, Liverpool 2-1 L
Goals: 9 – Teemu Pukki, 4 – Joshua Sargent, 3 – Kenny McLean, 2 – Milot Rashica, Lukas Rupp, Christos Tzolis, 1 – Grant Hanley, Adam Idah, Pierre Lees-Melou, Mathias Normann, Andrew Omobamidele
Assists: 3 – Teemu Pukki, Joshua Sargent, 2 – Billy Gilmour, Mathias Normann, Milot Rashica, Christos Tzolis, 1 – Max Aarons, Kieran Dowell, Dimitris Giannoulis, Adam Idah, Kenny McLean, Jonathan Rowe, Brandon Williams
Previous meetings with Norwich and their connections with United.
United and Norwich have met 19 times in the Premier League. United have won 15 times, drawn once with Norwich winning three times. United have scored 36 goals, winning five penalties and scoring three. Norwich have scored 11 goals, winning no penalties.
United have kept 11 clean sheets with Norwich keeping two. Discipline has been an issue with United players receiving 16 yellow cards and no red cards and Norwich players being shown 23 yellow cards and no red cards. United’s season is effectively over but they need to start winning again.
Robbie Brady, Steve Bruce, Jacob Butterfield, Luke Chadwick, Ritchie De Laet, Dion Dublin, David Fox, David Healy, Paul Heckingbottom, Rhodri Jones, Phil Mulryne, Alex Notman, Anthony Pilkington, Simon Ratcliffe, Mark Robins, Michael Rose, and Martin Russel all played for both clubs.
Brandon Williams is currently on loan at the club and ineligible to face United this weekend. David Beckham and Rio Ferdinand both had trials at Norwich. Henning Berg, who is currently a scout for the played for United. Mike Phelan, United assistant coach, also played for both clubs.
Team News: United will be missing Cavani, Fred, McTominay, Varane and Shaw but Ronaldo should be fit; Norwich missing Kabak, Omobamidele and Idah with three sweating on fitness.
Manchester United: Edinson Cavani (Calf), Fred (Hip), Scott McTominay (Foot), Raphaël Varane (Other) and Luke Shaw (Leg) have all been ruled out for the foreseeable future. Cristiano Ronaldo (Leg Laceration) should be back in the squad for this match.
Norwich City: Ozan Kabak (Thigh), Andrew Omobamidele (Lower Back) and Adam Idah (Knee) have all been ruled out this weekend. Joshua Sargent (Ankle), Przemyslaw Placheta (Ankle) and Billy Gilmour (Illness) are all doubts and will be assessed ahead of this clash, but could make it.
Predicted Starting XI: Ronaldo to lead the line ad United look to change their fortunes? Blooding youth into the squad now could be the best this that has happened this season.
Ralf Rangnick needs to get results from this team if they are to finish the season in any kind of group that could achieve something in the future. I don’t think I am one my own when I say this team embarrasses me every time they play and I just want to see some fight.
It might be time to bring some of the talented youth into the team and ready them for the pre-season tour in the summer and a role they could play in the squad next season. United have nothing to gain this season now and Champions League football seems unlikely.
I would expect to see David De Gea in goal again, although Dean Henderson will be seeking minutes. Diogo Dalot should be recalled at right-back with Alex Telles keeping his place at left-back. Victor Lindelöf and Harry Maguire should partner in the centre of defence.
In the midfield, Nemanja Matić, Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandez should start with Marcus Rashford (left) and Jadon Sancho (right) flanking Cristiano Ronaldo. The likes of Alvaro Fernandez, Charlie Savage and maybe even Alejandro Garnacho should be on the bench.
Match Prediction: United are unbeaten against Norwich in the last five matches but not in great form as the club limps towards the finish line of the 2021/22 season.
Earlier this season, United beat Norwich 1-0 at Carrow Road with Cristiano Ronaldo scoring a penalty in the 75th minute of the match. It was not a great victory for United, but a victory none the less. United will need to put in an impressive performance in this match on Saturday though.
Norwich were not in the Premier League last season, so United did not pace them. During the 2019/20 season, United played Norwich three times, twice in the Premier League and once in the Emirates FA Cup – winning all three matches.
At Carrow Road, it was a 3-1 victory with Scott McTominay, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial scoring the goals – Onel Hernández got a consolation. At Old Trafford, United won 4-0 with Rashford scoring a brace, Martial and Mason Greenwood scoring the other goals.
In the FA Cup match, played at Carrow Road, United won 2-1 with Odion Ighalo and Todd Cantwell scoring inside the 90 minute match and Harry Maguire scoring the winner in the 118th minute to put United into the next round.
Manchester United 2-1 Norwich City
Written by John Walker