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Ratings: Rashford, Martial, Pogba helped blunt the Blades; Rashford brace and Martial back on the scoresheet

Manchester United beat Sheffield United 3-2 in the Premier League at Bramall Lane on Thursday evening which saw Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side reach sixth place in the league table. A defensive error from a Harry Maguire back pass which saw Dean Henderson concede the first goal against his former loan club saw United start on the back foot once again. But a brace from Marcus Rashford and a goal from Anthony Martial saw United having a new leading goalscorer this season. The Red Devils will now focus on the home class with Leeds United on Sunday as the games come every three days at this Festive period. David McGoldrick completed his brace, scoring in the first and last five minutes of the match.

It was yet another poor start for United against the team at the bottom of the Premier League. The Blades opened the scoring in the fifth minute of the match after a defensive error from United. Victor Lindelof played the ball to Dean Henderson, who started against his former loan club, for the goalkeeper to pass out to Harry Maguire, who immediately passed back to Henderson with David McGoldrick on the advance and taking advantage of the error and scoring the first goal of the match. Many will blame Henderson for that but in my opinion, Maguire should not have passed the ball back to the goalkeeper, he should have played it out.

United soon got themselves back in the match with Marcus Rashford scoring his 11th goal of the season after a stunning assist from Victor Lindelof, who looped the ball over the top up field which the England forward received, took a touch and fired United level seconds later. Seven minutes later, United were in the lead for the first time in the match through Anthony Martial, who scored his third goal of the season. It was a precise pass from Paul Pogba in midfield, up top for the Frenchman, who just managed to gather the ball to slot home in the 33rd minute of the match.

United would rise to sixth in the Premier League with a victory in this match but winning by a four goal margin would put the Red Devils ahead of Everton into fifth place, which would be a complement to United, especially after conceding the opening goal once again. United scored again in the 51st minute of the match, seemingly meaning business to get a victory on the road once again. Rashford scored his second goal of the match, which was played forward by Pogba, but after a foul, was passed about with Bruno Fernandes getting a touch in creating it with Martial getting the assist for United’s third goal of the match.

Solskjaer made the first change in the 74th minute of the with Juan Mata replacing Mason Greenwood. Six minutes later, Donny van de Beek replaced Bruno Fernandes in the 80th minute of the match. United were 3-1 up at the time and seeming close to victory. However, in the 87th minute of the match, the Blades got themselves back into the match through McGoldrick with Lindelof making an error which saw the goal stand. It was an uneasy last few minutes, plus added time with United looking back at their last match at Bramall Lane, which saw them come from 2-0 down, leading 3-2 and drawing in the last minute of the match.

Alex Telles protested to the referee after the Blades’ second goal, which after the reply deemed the Brazilian left-back right to protest. However, the goal was given. Henderson was booked in added time for time wasting and made a good save to deny his former loan club once again. United, at 3-2 up, would have been feeling the pressure from the Blades, who were seeking to double their points tally in the league this season. United got the victory, despite conceding twice, which saw them rise to sixth in the league. Leeds United will head to Old Trafford for the first time in the Premier League since 2004, which will be a big match for United.

Manchester United

26 Dean Henderson

Conceded the first goal of the game inside five minutes after a defensive error by Maguire. Soon recovered and gained composure from the opening goal, soon doing this best to try and avert any further goals. Conceded a second goal late in the game and also made a good save to deny his former loan club.

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29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Played well in the right-back position. Got forward a lot of the time and defended when he needed to. I would like to see him more clinical on the attack for United.

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2 Victor Lindelof

Got an assist for Rashford's equaliser. firing the ball over the top with Rashford taking a touch before finding the back of the net.

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5 Harry Maguire

Should not have passed the ball back to Henderson, which led to the opening goal of the match. An England international should understand his defensive duties much better than that.

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27 Alex Telles

Restored himself at the left-back position and played some good football in the victory for United. Having him and Shaw fit at this stage of the match will be a good thing for the freshness of the squad, at least in the left-back position.

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31 Nemanja Matic

Played a good game, at times. Not a starter regularly for me, but did his bit tonight. Will probably be rested at the weekend to play again next week.

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6 Paul Pogba

Played a great ball into Martial in the 33rd minute of the match, which turned into the goal which put United ahead for the first time in the match.

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11 Mason Greenwood

Played a good attacking game against the Blades, after United's initial set back. He did not score any goals or assists but played a part in the victory never the less. He was replaced by Mata in the 74th minute of the match.

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18 Bruno Fernandes

It was not his best match for United and not his worst either. He played a part in United's third goal, which was partly a team goal. He was replaced by Van de Beek in the 80th minute of the match. I reckon the Dutchman could start against Leeds United on Sunday,

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10 Marcus Rashford

Scored the equaliser for United form a Lindelof assist over the top, taking a touch before beating the Blades' goalkeeper. It was a cracking finish for the England forward and hopefully we start to see more from him after scoring his 11th goal of the season. Scored his 12th goal of the season in the 51st minute of the match, assisted by Martial to put United 3-1 up against the Blades.

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9 Anthony Martial

Scored his third goal of the season, putting United ahead for the first time in the match. He and Pogba seem to link with with the midfielder searching for him a few time with the long passes into the box. Got himself his second assist of the season for Rashford's second goal of the match, which put United 3-1 up against the Blades.

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Substitutes

8 Juan Mata

Replaced Greenwood 74'. Came on with 16 minutes, plus added time, left to play. United conceded another goal, failing to keep the game in bed at 3-1 up. Not Mata's fault though.

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34 Donny van de Beek

Replaced Fernandes 80'. Came on for ten minutes, which will hopefully see him start against Leeds on Sunday. He needs more time on the pitch. That will probably come at tis busy period of the season.

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39 Scott McTominay

Replaced Martial 90'. Came on at the death with United just conceding a second goal. Did not really have the time to get involved in the game but did what he needed to, as he usually does.

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Goals: David McGoldrick 5′, 87′; Marcus Rashford 26′, 51′, Anthony Martial 33′

Assists: Oliver Burke 5′; Victor Lindelof 26′, Anthony Martial 51′

Manchester United: Henderson; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Telles; Matic, Pogba; Greenwood (Mata 74′), Fernandes (Van de Beek 80′), Rashford; Martial (McTominay 90′)

Substitutes Not Used: De Gea; Shaw; Fred, James

Bookings: Phil Jagielka 51′, John Egan 70′, Jack Robinson 90+5′; Dean Henderson 90+1′, Paul Pogba 90+5′

Written by John Walker

Confirmed XI: Henderson, Telles, Matic, Pogba, Greenwood, Fernandes, Rashford and Martial start against the Blades

Manchester United will enter a busy period of the Premier League season this evening as they travel to Bramall Lane to face Premier League strugglers Sheffield United. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will play every three days until New Year’s Day when the face Aston Villa at Old Trafford. It is normally the busy end of the season. Solskjaer’s side will be seeking to find some form after a 0-0 draw against Manchester City at Old Trafford at the weekend with the Blades still searching for their first Premier League win of the season, which might be hard to get against United, who want to propel themselves up the Premier League table.

Chris Wilder’s side are in poor form, having only scored six goals in all competitions so far this season, five of those in the Premier League and one in the Carabao Cup. It is hoped that David De Gea will be rested ahead of the visit of Leeds United to Old Trafford on Sunday, which could see Dean Henderson in goal for United, against the team he spent the 2018/19 and 2019/20 seasons on loan with. The Blades seem to be missing the 23-year-old this season, which could be a massive blow if the young English goalkeeper starts on Thursday evening. Solskjaer will need to rotate his team to keep them fresh ahead of this busy Festive period.

Manchester United:

Henderson;

Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Telles;

Matic, Pogba;

Greenwood, Fernandes, Rashford;

Martial

Substitutes:

De Gea; Shaw; Mata, Fred, McTominay, James, Van de Beek

Sheffield United:

Ramsdale;

Basham, Egan, Robinson;

Baldock, Berge, Ampadu, Fleck, Stevens;

McGoldrick, Burke

Substitutes:

Verrips; Jagielka; Norwood, Osborn; Sharp, Mousset, Brewster

United and the Blades have met a total of eight times in the history of the Premier League. United have won six times whereas the Blades have won once with one draw between the two clubs. United have scored a total of 19 goals, winning no penalties. The Blades have scored a total of seven goals, also winning no penalties. United have kept a total of four clean sheets with the Blades keeping just no clean sheets. In terms of discipline, United have been shown a total of 11 yellow cards and no red cards with the Blades being shown a total of 16 yellow cards and no red cards.

Last season, in the fixture at Bramall Lane, which was played on the 24 November 2019, it was a 3-3 draw between the two sides. The Blades opened the scoring through John Fleck in the 19th minute of the match, doubling the lead through Lys Mousset in the 52nd minute. United got a goal back through Brandon Williams in the 72nd minute, equalised through Mason Greenwood in the 77th minute, then scored what should have been the winner through Marcus Rashford in the 79th minute, but Oliver McBurnie scored a 90th minute equaliser. At Old Trafford, it was a 3-0 victory for United with Anthony Martial scoring a hat-trick.

Written by John Walker

Predicted XI: [4-2-3-1] Henderson, Tuanzebe, Pogba, Greenwood, Fernandes, Rashford and Martial to start against the Blades?

Manchester United will enter a busy period of the Premier League season on Thursday evening as they travel to Bramall Lane to face Premier League strugglers Sheffield United. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will play every three days until New Year’s Day when the face Aston Villa at Old Trafford. It is normally the busy end of the season. Solskjaer’s side will be seeking to find some form after a 0-0 draw against Manchester City at Old Trafford at the weekend with the Blades still searching for their first Premier League win of the season, which might be hard to get against United, who want to propel themselves up the Premier League table.

Chris Wilder’s side are in poor form, having only scored six goals in all competitions so far this season, five of those in the Premier League and one in the Carabao Cup. It is hoped that David De Gea will be rested ahead of the visit of Leeds United to Old Trafford on Sunday, which could see Dean Henderson in goal for United, against the team he spent the 2018/19 and 2019/20 seasons on loan with. The Blades seem to be missing the 23-year-old this season, which could be a massive blow if the young English goalkeeper starts on Thursday evening. Solskjaer will need to rotate his team to keep them fresh ahead of this busy Festive period.

How United have faired against Sheffield United in the Premier League.

United and the Blades have met a total of eight times in the history of the Premier League. United have won six times whereas the Blades have won once with one draw between the two clubs. United have scored a total of 19 goals, winning no penalties. The Blades have scored a total of seven goals, also winning no penalties. United have kept a total of four clean sheets with the Blades keeping just no clean sheets. In terms of discipline, United have been shown a total of 11 yellow cards and no red cards with the Blades being shown a total of 16 yellow cards and no red cards.

Last season, in the fixture at Bramall Lane, which was played on the 24 November 2019, it was a 3-3 draw between the two sides. The Blades opened the scoring through John Fleck in the 19th minute of the match, doubling the lead through Lys Mousset in the 52nd minute. United got a goal back through Brandon Williams in the 72nd minute, equalised through Mason Greenwood in the 77th minute, then scored what should have been the winner through Marcus Rashford in the 79th minute, but Oliver McBurnie scored a 90th minute equaliser. At Old Trafford, it was a 3-0 victory for United with Anthony Martial scoring a hat-trick.

Here is my predicted starting XI to face Sheffield United in the Premier League at Bramall Lane on Thursday evening…

Goalkeeper: Dean Henderson

David De Gea kept a clean sheet against Manchester City at the weekend, but with the matches starting to come thick and fast this month, with United playing every three days until New Year’s Day, rotation will need to happen to keep the players fresh. I would rater see De Gea face Leeds United at Old Trafford at the weekend, which would leave Dean Henderson in a position to head pack to familiar ground starting against his former loan club, which he spent the 2018/19 and 2019/20 seasons at. It could be a good game for the 23-year-old to show his worth to his manager in his bid to dethrone De Gea from the number one spot at United.

Defenders: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Axel Tuanzebe, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw

This is a major problem area for United. They will, however, be boosted by the fact they did not concede any goals against Manchester City at the weekend, which will be seen, not by everyone, as a good result. United need to find consistency in this area and it is speculated that a central defender could be on the cards during the January transfer window, which was really needed in the summer. Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw will keep their places in the fullback positions with Axel Tuanzebe partnering Harry Maguire in the central defensive position, which could be a chance for the duo to forge a partnership this season.

Midfield: Scott McTominay, Paul Pogba

Solskjaer needs to find balance in the midfield this season as there are is many changes recently, a partnership in a 4-2-3-1 formation has not been able to be found. I think Paul Pogba will start in this match, which will be an opportunity for the Frenchman to show what he’s made of amid the speculation regarding his future, which seems to be touted for the summer transfer window. If the player is not performing well, there is a chance that there may not be much, if any, interest in the player. Scott McTominay should partner the Frenchman. What he offers the club is sheer grit and determination and plenty of passion to succeed.

Attacking Midfield: Mason Greenwood, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford

All three players have found the back of the net multiple times this season with Mason Greenwood scoring three goals, Bruno Fernandes scoring 11 and Marcus Rashford scoring 10 – that is an impressive 24 goals in all competitions so far, which could be furthered with a good performance against the Blades, who are struggling in the Premier League this season. United should get the three points on offer easy and then get on track to face Leeds United at Old Trafford for the first time in the Premier League since 2004, which was a 1-1 draw between the fierce rivals. If this trio are on form, this could be a good match for United.

Forwards: Anthony Martial

The Frenchman has scored just two goals in all competitions so far this season and is behind both Fernandes (11), Rashford (10), Edinson Cavani (three) and Greenwood (three) in the goalscoring ranks. Martial missed the RB Leipzig match, which was a blow, coming off the bench against City, but unable to be the difference between the two sides drawing. Martial will need to find some form or the fact that Cavani is at the club could see him being resigned to the bench or back on the left-wing, should Rashford not play, or play in another position. Martial should be finding some form about now and failure to do that could be devastating for him.

Substitutes: David De Gea; Eric Bailly, Alex Telles; Juan Mata, Daniel James, Donny van de Beek; Edinson Cavani

Three substitutes will be available in domestic competitions now that European football is out of the way until February. With matches coming every three days until New Year’s Day, Solskjaer will need to keep his squad fresh for the onslaught of matches which will be tough for United. David De Gea could be on the bench should Henderson start against the Blades. In defence, Eric Bailly and Alex Telles could be options, should they be required. In midfield, Juan Mata, Daniel James and Donny van de Beek could come on to change the game with Edinson Cavani the only forward on the bench, should be not be fit enough to start the match.

Written by John Walker

Preview: Sheffield United -v- Manchester United – Premier League – United ready to destroy the Blades?

Sheffield United -v- Manchester United

Premier League

Bramall Lane, Sheffield

Thursday 17 December 2020, KO 20:00 GMT

Referee: Michael Oliver Assistants: Stuart Burt, Simon Bennett

Fourth Official: Robert Jones

VAR: Paul Tierney Assistant VAR: Harry Lennard

Manchester United will enter a busy period of the Premier League season on Thursday evening as they travel to Bramall Lane to face Premier League strugglers Sheffield United. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will play every three days until New Year’s Day when the face Aston Villa at Old Trafford. It is normally the busy end of the season. Solskjaer’s side will be seeking to find some form after a 0-0 draw against Manchester City at Old Trafford at the weekend with the Blades still searching for their first Premier League win of the season, which might be hard to get against United, who want to propel themselves up the Premier League table.

Chris Wilder’s side are in poor form, having only scored six goals in all competitions so far this season, five of those in the Premier League and one in the Carabao Cup. It is hoped that David De Gea will be rested ahead of the visit of Leeds United to Old Trafford on Sunday, which could see Dean Henderson in goal for United, against the team he spent the 2018/19 and 2019/20 seasons on loan with. The Blades seem to be missing the 23-year-old this season, which could be a massive blow if the young English goalkeeper starts on Thursday evening. Solskjaer will need to rotate his team to keep them fresh ahead of this busy Festive period.

Manchester United: DLWLWW

Manchester City 0-0 D, RB Leipzig 3-2 L, West Ham United 3-1 W, Paris Saint-Germain 3-1 L, Southampton 3-2 W, Istanbul Basaksehir 4-1 W

Sheffield United: WWDWWL

Olympique de Marseille 3-0 W, Fulham 2-0 W, FC Porto 0-0 D, Burnley 5-0 W, Olympiacos FC 1-0 W, Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 L

Top Scorers: Sheffield United have scored six goals in all competitions this season. Bruno Fernandes has 11 goals himself in all competitions. The Blades are in dire form in front of goal.

Manchester United Goals: 11 – Bruno Fernandes, 10 – Marcus Rashford, 3 – Edinson Cavani, Mason Greenwood, 2 – Harry Maguire, Anthony Martial, Juan Mata, Paul Pogba, 1 – Own Goal, Daniel James, Scott McTominay, Donny van de Beek, Aaron Wan-Bissaka

United’s exit from the Champions League last week, which saw them fall back into the Europa League, will have hurt the players, who were top of their group in the Champions League going into the final match against RB Leipzig, needing just a draw; losing 3-2 with a late comeback from United, which was not enough. After some good form in the Premier League, this has left the club falling short. A 0-0 draw against Manchester City at Old Trafford at the weekend will have been a good result for some, but United should be taking advantage of their position against teams like the Blades, who are struggling this season.

Sheffield United Goals: 3 – David McGoldrick, 1 – Sander Berge, Oliver McBurnie, Billy Sharp

The Blades have started poorly in the Premier League this season and after 12 matches, still only have one point on the board and are still seeking their first victory of the season. It is early days to suggest anything, but the Blades could match Derby County’s record in the Premier League, or even beat it if things do not improve this season. The Championship could beckon once again for the club who looked to achieve a place in European competition last season. It seems to be a dramatic fall from grace with the player’s having a lot of soul searching to do in order to get back on track in the top flight of English football.

Team News: Three players could be out of action for the Blades with two possible absences for United but I think Edinson Cavani will be fit to face the Blades on Thursday evening.

Phil Jones (knee) has been ruled out until 2021, not that he was named in the Premier League squad this season anyway, which would stop him form playing if he was indeed fit. Edinson Cavani has returned to training but has a 75% chance of being fit to ply against the Blades on Thursday evening. Solskjaer suggested that he would not make it for the Manchester City match, which was the case but there would seem to be a large chance that he could feature against the Blades, with United’s attacking line a little short against City, not that creativity in the match led to many great chances in front of goal.

Kean Bryan (calf strain) and Jack O’Connell (knee) have both been ruled out of the clash with United at Bramall Lane on Thursday evening. Oliver McBurnie (shoulder) has a 25% chance of being available for the match, which suggests it is unlikely that he would play – but that said, there are still two more days until the match, so he might recover in time. This will be an important match for the bottom of the table club, which could see them fall further behind with another defeat this season. Chris Wilder will be hoping that his Blades side rediscover their form against United keeping an eye on the result at home last season.

Predicted Starting XI: Anthony Martial to lead the line supported by Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes and Mason Greenwood but with changes expected throughout the match to keep the players fresh for a busy month?

Anthony Martial could lead the line against the Blades on Thursday evening with United looking to get another three points in the bag. This may or may not be ideal but the Frenchman will be seeking to score some goal this season to catch up with Bruno Fernandes, who has eleven goals and Marcus Rashford, who has ten. Rashford, Mason Greenwood and Fernandes should play in the three behind the striker. In midfield, Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay could do a job with Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Axel Tuanzebe, Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw in a four-man defence. Dean Henderson could face his former club, starting in place if David De Gea.

Match Prediction: Eight matches played between United and the Blades with United winning six, losing once and drawing once.

United and the Blades have met a total of eight times in the history of the Premier League. United have won six times whereas the Blades have won once with one draw between the two clubs. United have scored a total of 19 goals, winning no penalties. The Blades have scored a total of seven goals, also winning no penalties. United have kept a total of four clean sheets with the Blades keeping just no clean sheets. In terms of discipline, United have been shown a total of 11 yellow cards and no red cards with the Blades being shown a total of 16 yellow cards and no red cards.

Last season, in the fixture at Bramall Lane, which was played on the 24 November 2019, it was a 3-3 draw between the two sides. The Blades opened the scoring through John Fleck in the 19th minute of the match, doubling the lead through Lys Mousset in the 52nd minute. United got a goal back through Brandon Williams in the 72nd minute, equalised through Mason Greenwood in the 77th minute, then scored what should have been the winner through Marcus Rashford in the 79th minute, but Oliver McBurnie scored a 90th minute equaliser. At Old Trafford, it was a 3-0 victory for United with Anthony Martial scoring a hat-trick.

Sheffield United 0-4 Manchester United

Written by John Walker

Review & Ratings: Brandon Williams and Mason Greenwood inspire United in 3-3 Blades draw; James came alive after 70 minutes!

Manchester United drew 3-3 with Sheffield United at Bramall Lane in the Premier League on Sunday. It seemed that United were down and out after the Blades doubled their lead. Three quick goals from Brandon Williams, Mason Greenwood, and Marcus Rashford changed the game for United but an Oliver McBurnie equaliser shared the spoils for both teams.

The Blades pressured United from the start of the game and had many chances on goal, all for David De Gea thwarting them with an early double save. In the 19th minute of the match, the Blades took the lead after Phil Jones was caught out on the left, allowing his man past him with the ball being put into the box. John Fleck found the back of the net.

It was starting to become one of those terrible matches for United after Lys Mousset doubled the home sides lead seven minutes into the second half. Andreas Pereira was caught in possession and Fleck was straight onto the ball, pushing forward and passing straight to Mousset, who beat De Gea to send the Blades 2-0 up. United needed a lot of improvement.

United seemed out of their depth and heading into another embarrassing defeat on the road. However, in the 72nd minute, Brandon Williams opened his account for United, getting a goal back and giving United some hope. It took the best part of five years for Luke Shaw to score, just a matter of months for 19-year-old Williams.

Just five minutes later, United were back in on goal, scoring the second of the match and the equaliser through Mason Greenwood, who scored his fourth goal of the season after Marcus Rashford played the ball into him. It was the sort of thing that United needed to show in this match, something that should have been present from the very start.

That was not it for United though, who put themselves ahead for the first time in the game, this time through Rashford, assisted by Daniel James, who has had a much better impact in this team that Alexis Sanchez had in more than 18 months at the club. Three goals and three assists this season for the Welsh winger.

Sadly though, the lead was not meant to be. The Blades got themselves an equaliser in the 90th minute of the match through Oliver McBurnie which may have caused controversy with VAR checking for a handball in the box before the second equaliser of the game. It was points shared at Bramall Lane and a let off for United, who seemed beaten.

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

The Spanish goalkeeper made some good saves to deny the Blades from scoring earlier than they did and he did put in a good performance, despite conceding three goals in the game. More to do for United now and something to build upon.

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2 Victor Lindelof

I'm not sure the Swedish international was ready today. He seemed out of his depth and did not seem to get into the game from start to finish. With Axel Tuanzebe back from injury and Eric Bailly on the way back, he should be worried.

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5 Harry Maguire

The £80 million man was the best United defender, not that there was much to be said. Lys Mousset made the former Blades defender struggle. United seemed more like the team that rose from the Championship last season.

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4 Phil Jones

He is a liability. Struggled with basic defending. Does not seem like a player that will ever reach the grade that was stated years ago. Nearly a decade at the club and nothing learned. Needs to be sold as soon as possible.

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29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

The right-back, despite starting in a 3-4-3 formation, seemed uncomfortable during the match against the Blades. His passing and the ranger of his passes was good. Needs to get more involved to stop opposition teams from breaking forward. Struggled with the Blades' pace at times.

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Andreas Pereira

Out of his depth at United. The second goal came because he could not keep the ball. He's not a midfielder, not a number ten and not a commanding winger. Just what is he? Not Manchester United material. Needs to be shown the door. It has not worked for him.

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17 Fred

The Brazilian has grown in stature at the club recently. Can hold his head high. Needs to be around players of a better quality that he's got around him. He did well alongside Scott McTominay. Got involved today but still searching for that mass of improvement.

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33 Brandon Williams

The 19-year-old had a tough game but it will be one that h will have learned a lot from. I think he's the best option at left-back right now. He's done more than Luke Shaw and Ashley Young is a liability. Got his opening goal for United and spurred his team on to score twice more.

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21 Daniel James

It seemed like he was not in the game for 70 minutes. Off days happen. Still a player who has offered more than Mr Moneybags, Alexis Sanchez in not even half the time the Chilean had been at the club. Came to life around the 70th minute and bagged another assist for himself.

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9 Anthony Martial

Struggled in the game for 70 minutes, until United came to life. He was not invoved in anything for United today. He needs to start showing the signs of him being the leading man at the club. I feel short changed by him at the moment. Especially at a time where someone needs to stand up and be counted.

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10 Marcus Rashford

The England forward plodded on in the game and got stuck in, but it was one of those games, for 70 minutes at least. An assist and a goal, despite ending up drawing, will be something to build on. 14 involvements in goals this season; 10 scored, four assisted.

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Substitutes

14 Jesse Lingard

Replaced Jones 46'. Came on at half time to make a difference for United. Made little impact other than creating space. Needs to find a goal soon, or it will be a year since last scoring. Needs to do so much better. Concentrate on football, not social media or fashion. Save that for when you can no longer play, which might be soon at this rate.

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11 Mason Greenwood

Replaced Pereira 73'. Can on when all hope was lost, despite Brandonw Williams scoring in the previous minute. Got stuck in though and scored a goal of his own, his fourth of the season. He is going to grow into some player, hopefully one United can use for years to come.

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38 Axel Tuanzebe

Replaced Martial 85'. Came on late in the game to add some fresh legs to the defence, at the expense of Anthony Martial. Sadly, after seeing United score three times in seven minutes, was unable to keep United ahead and leaving Sheffield with three points in the bag.

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Goals: John Fleck 19′, Lys Mousset 52′; Brandon Williams 72′, Mason Greenwood 77′, Marcus Rashford 79′

Assists: John Fleck 52′; Marcus Rashford 77′, Daniel James 79′

Manchester United: De Gea; Lindelof, Maguire, Jones (Lingard 46′); Wan-Bissaka, Pereira (Greenwood 73′), Fred, Williams; James, Martial (Tuanzebe 85′), Rashford

Substitutes Not Used: Grant; Young; Mata, Garner

Bookings: John Lundstram 51′; Brandon Williams 53′, Aaron Wan-Bissaka 60′

Confirmed Starting XI: Three at the back for United with Jones, Maguire and Lindelof, Fred keeps his place, James, Martial and Rashford lead the line

Manchester United will be pitted against Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United at Bramall Lane in the Premier League this afternoon. It has been more than 26 years since United were beaten by the Blades and just under four years since the last match between the two teams. This may be considered a tough game for United, being that the Blades have been doing well so far this season, currently sitting in eighth place.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United currently find themselves in tenth position in the league with a lot of work to do in order to better that at this important end of the season which will see United playing 12 matches between now and the clash with Arsenal on New Years Day. United will be needing all of their injured players fit for the matches they have to play or there will not be enough players for match rotation.

On Thursday, United play in Kazakhstan, Solskjaer will not want the majority of his first team players travelling 7,000 miles on the round trip as they face Aston Villa at Old Trafford in the Premier League on the following Sunday, meaning in eight straight days, three matches will have been played, a similar story for each week until the end of the Christmas period. United could use this period to get a grasp on bettering their position this season, which needs to be done.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Lindelof, Maguire, Jones;

Wan-Bissaka, Pereira, Fred, Williams;

James, Martial, Rashford

Substitutes:

Grant; Young, Tuanzebe; Mata, Lingard, Garner; Greenwood

Sheffield United:

Moore;

Basham, Jagielka, O’Connell;

Baldock, Lundstram, Norwood, Fleck, Stevens;

McGoldrick, Mousset

Substitutes:

Verrips, Freeman, McBurnie, Sharp, Robinson, Osborn, Besic

United and Sheffield United have played 93 times in the history of both clubs. United has won 44 times, drawing 15 times and losing 34 times. In their last seven meetings, United have a 100% record, winning all seven matches, scoring 14 goals and conceding just one. Four of the matches were in the Premier League, the other three in the FA Cup. The last match came almost four years ago in the third round of the FA Cup at Old Trafford, a 1-0 victory for United with Wayne Rooney scoring a 90th minute penalty.

The last defeat to the Blades came on the 14 February 1993, a 2-1 defeat in the fifth round of the FA Cup at Bramall Lane with Ryan Giggs scoring United’s only goal of the game. The Blades will be seeking another good performance against United, more than 26 years after their last victory. Of course, at Old Trafford, the Blades last won on the 26 December 1973, almost 46 years ago, a 2-1 defeat which saw Lou Macari score the only goal for United.

How Manchester United could look against Sheffield United; 4-2-3-1 with James Garner replacing Scott McTominay in midfield

Manchester United will be pitted against Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United at Bramall Lane in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon. It has been more than 26 years since United were beaten by the Blades and just under four years since the last match between the two teams. This may be considered a tough game for United, being that the Blades have been doing well so far this season, currently sitting in eighth place.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United currently find themselves in tenth position in the league with a lot of work to do in order to better that at this important end of the season which will see United playing 12 matches between now and the clash with Arsenal on New Years Day. United will be needing all of their injured players fit for the matches they have to play or there will not be enough players for match rotation.

On Thursday, United play in Kazakhstan, Solskjaer will not want the majority of his first team players travelling 7,000 miles on the round trip as they face Aston Villa at Old Trafford in the Premier League on the following Sunday, meaning in eight straight days, three matches will have been played, a similar story for each week until the end of the Christmas period. United could use this period to get a grasp on bettering their position this season, which needs to be done.

Goalkeeper: David De Gea

David De Gea should be back in action for United as they travel to Bramall Lane to face Sheffield United. The Spanish goalkeeper has kept two clean sheets this season, two in the Premier League, one in the UEFA Europa League. De Gea has had some good performances for United this season and that will partly be down to the fact the defence has been improved upon after the club conceded 54 goals in the league alone last season. De Gea might be tested by the Blades as they look to keep their high position in the top flight.

Defenders: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Brandon Williams

The defence has improved this season following the arrival of Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire. The former has been a breath of fresh air with his tackling and commanding runs forward. The latter has added some confidence at the back, something which was needed at the club after a poor last season in which the club conceded so many goals. Against the Blades, I would expect both Wan-Bissaka and Maguire to keep their places with Victor Lindelof returning and Brandon Williams keeping his place in the team. I’m not a fan of Ashley Young at left-back.

Midfield: James Garner, Fred

With the absence of Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba, Solskjaer will have a very thin midfield to choose from. Dylan Levitt trained with the first team on Saturday morning but as he played on Friday evening for the U23s, it might be Thursday before he gets a chance to show his abilities in the first team. I expect Fred to keep his place in the team following a good run of form. To partner him, the Norwegian manager has few options; James Garner or putting Andreas Pereira back in midfield. In which case, Garner would get the nod from me.

Attacking Midfield: Daniel James, Angel Gomes, Marcus Rashford

The attacking midfield, of the three behind the striker is one of the best things about the club at this moment in time. Marcus Rashford, playing on the left, seems to be full of confidence lately, scoring nine goals in all competitions this season. Daniel James started well this season, scoring three goals early in the season but has not seen his name on the scoresheet since. The Welsh winger has pace and ability in his locker and is a surety in the squad. I would like to see Angel Gomes given a chance again, now that he has recovered from injury. He could do so much better than both Pereira and Jesse Lingard.

Striker: Anthony Martial

Anthony Martial has been in good form this season, despite missing eight matches due to injury from late August until late October. The Frenchman has scored five goals, assisting three more this season and he will be on the hunt to raise that figure. He needs to put in as good a performance as he did against Brighton And Hove Albion before the international break earlier this month, which would be good for both the player and the club. Hearing “£50 million down the drain, Tony Martial scores again” sung in the stands is great to hear.

Substitutes: Sergio Romero; Luke Shaw, Axel Tuanzebe; Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard, Andreas Pereira; Mason Greenwood

The bench this weekend could see some faces return from injury with Luke Shaw and Axel Tuanzebe back in training and in need of match fitness before that start playing again. The defence could really do with Tuanzebe back in action as Marcos Rojo will be on the sidelines for a few weeks, however, Eric Bailly is back in training and could be back in action soon. To add midfield and attacking reinforcement, Mason Greenwood, Juan Mata, Andreas Pereira and Jesse Lingard could be utilised if needed. Sergio Romero could also be on the bench if he needs to be called upon.

Preview: Solskjaer’s United tasked with putting the Blades to the Sword in Premier League clash at Bramall Lane

Sheffield United -v- Manchester United

Premier League

Bramall Lane, Sheffield

Sunday 24 November 2019, KO 16:30 GMT

Referee: Andre Marriner  Assistants: Simon Long; Sian Massey-Ellis Fourth Official: Andy Madley

VAR: Graham Scott Assistant VAR: Stephen Child

Manchester United will be pitted against Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United at Bramall Lane in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon. It has been more than 26 years since United were beaten by the Blades and just under four years since the last match between the two teams. This may be considered a tough game for United, being that the Blades have been doing well so far this season, currently sitting in eighth place.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United currently find themselves in tenth position in the league with a lot of work to do in order to better that at this important end of the season which will see United playing 12 matches between now and the clash with Arsenal on New Years Day. United will be needing all of their injured players fit for the matches they have to play or there will not be enough players for match rotation.

On Thursday, United play in Kazakhstan, Solskjaer will not want the majority of his first team players travelling 7,000 miles on the round trip as they face Aston Villa at Old Trafford in the Premier League on the following Sunday, meaning in eight straight days, three matches will have been played, a similar story for each week until the end of the Christmas period. United could use this period to get a grasp on bettering their position this season, which needs to be done.

Form: Five wins and a defeat for United in the last six matches puts them in better form than the Blades, who have two wins, three draws and one defeat in the same number of matches.

Manchester United: WWLWWW

Brighton And Hove Albion 3-1 W, Partizan Belgrade 3-0 W, Bournemouth 1-0 L, Chelsea 2-1 W, Norwich City 3-1 W, Partizan Belgrade 1-0 W

Sheffield United: DWDWDL

Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 D, Burnley 3-0 W, West Ham United 1-1 D, Arsenal 1-0 W, Watford 0-0 D, Liverpool 1-0 L

Top Scorers: Marcus Rashford has scored three times as many goals as Blades top scorer John Lundstram this season. United has scored 24 goals this season with the Blades scoring just 13.

Manchester United: Solskjaer’s side set to show their worth and put the Blades to the sword in Bramall Lane encounter.

Goals: 9 – Marcus Rashford, 5 – Anthony Martial, 3 – Mason Greenwood, Daniel James, Scott McTominay, 1 – Andreas Pereira

United have improved their form most recently and in the past six matches, winning five of them and losing once shows a bit of form developing. It will be better when the injured players come back and strengthen the team for the busy festive period. In January, transfers may arrive to further bolster the club, which would set them in the right direction, which needs to happen.

Sheffield United: In with a chance against this United side but without Dean Henderson, will they be as good?

Goals: 3 – John Lundstram, Lys Mousset, 1 – George Baldock, John Fleck, Oliver McBurnie, Oliver Norwood, Callum Robinson, Billy Sharp, Richard Stearman

The Blades have done well this season and are currently seventh in the league, although that could change after Saturday’s matches have been played. They are the highest newly-promoted club from the Championship last season and are in a similar form to Wolverhampton Wanderers last season, which is good for them. The Blades have been exciting at times and play a good, strategic game of football.

Team News: Injuries will continue for United with youth getting another opportunity to impress in places, covering for injured and unfit players. Solskjaer needs to allow these players to develop.

Solskjaer will be boosted with an end in sight to some players who have been on the sidelines through injury. Axel Tuanzebe, Luke Shaw, and Nemanja Matic are all back in training, however, they are not match fit. Eric Bailly and Tim Fosu-Mensah have both returned to training from their knee injuries and could be ready next month.

Scott McTominay will be out for a fortnight, Marcos Rojo being added to the injury list and facing the timescale on the sidelines and with Paul Pogba nearing the end of his injury spell, which last saw him play in the 1-1 draw with Arsenal at Old Trafford at the end of September. Diogo Dalot will be out for a few weeks yet also.

Chris Wilder will be without goalkeeper Dean Henderson, who is not injured but ineligible to face his parent club as he is only on loan at Sheffield, meaning Simon Moore could make his third appearance of the season, his first in the Premier League. Defender John Egan is a slight doubt, who may be subject to a late fitness test, having played 12 times in the league this season.

Predicted Starting XI: James Garner and Angel Gomes to be tested against the Blades with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needing to find a more creative way of playing after Andreas Pereira and Jesse Lingard fail to show their worth in this team.

Solskjaer will need to make some changes to his squad, especially with Scott McTominay out of action for a few weeks. This could see the pivot of Fred and James Garner in midfield, which would be good for Garner and his rise into the first team this season. Angel Gomes could see himself back in the first team after an assist hat-trick whilst playing for England U20s during the international break. He might be able to offer more than Andreas Pereira and Jesse Lingard in the number ten position.

Match Prediction: United have a seven match unbeaten record against the Blades which covers the majority of the past 26 years and are undefeated at Old Trafford against the Blades for almost 46 years.

United and Sheffield United have played 93 times in the history of both clubs. United has won 44 times, drawing 15 times and losing 34 times. In their last seven meetings, United have a 100% record, winning all seven matches, scoring 14 goals and conceding just one. Four of the matches were in the Premier League, the other three in the FA Cup. The last match came almost four years ago in the third round of the FA Cup at Old Trafford, a 1-0 victory for United with Wayne Rooney scoring a 90th minute penalty.

The last defeat to the Blades came on the 14 February 1993, a 2-1 defeat in the fifth round of the FA Cup at Bramall Lane with Ryan Giggs scoring United’s only goal of the game. The Blades will be seeking another good performance against United, more than 26 years after their last victory. Of course, at Old Trafford, the Blades last won on the 26 December 1973, almost 46 years ago, a 2-1 defeat which saw Lou Macari score the only goal for United.

Sheffield United 1-2 Manchester United

copyright: JW