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Ratings: Toothless United lose 4-2 at Leicester; Greenwood and Rashford both scored for United

Manchester United were beaten 4-2 by Leicester City at the King Power Stadium. It was another big defeat for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side at the stadium, losing last season in the FA Cup. United unbeaten away run was now over. Mason Greenwood opened the scoring in the 19th minute of the match but Youri Tielemans equalised in the 31st minute. Leicester then found a second goal, scored by Çaglar Söyüncü in the 78th minute before Marcus Rashford levelled in the 82nd minute for United. Jamie Vardy put Leicester ahead again a minute later before Patson Daka completed the rout in the first minute of added time.

Leicester started the match in fine fettle, pressing United from the off and having an early shot on target. United seemed to be scared of the Foxes, which did not look good in the opening minutes but they soon got their grasp on the game and worked their possession in their favour. Solskjaer’s side needed to get a good result in this match. Mason Greenwood had a good run with the ball, shooting on goal but finding the clutches of Kasper Schmeichel. United ended up opening the scoring in the match with Greenwood beating Schmeichel from range, assisted by Bruno Fernandes – it was a stunning finish for the 20-year-old.

United’s lead lasted just 12 minutes with Youri Tielemans, assisted by Kelechi Iheanacho, grabbed the equaliser in the 31st minute of the match with Harry Maguire making an earlier mistake which led to the goal. It was another great finish in this match with the goals being scored from distance into the opposite corner of the net from where the shot came from on the pitch. United needed to go back to square one and find a way of making a difference in this match, which is going to be hard for them considering the form and mentality of this Leicester side, which is needed for them if they are to rise up the Premier League table this season.

The first half ended 1-1 with either team able to get the win at this stage. United had eight shots on goal, three of those were on target, one of those was scored. Three shots were off target and two were blocked. Leicester has six shots on goal, three of those on target and one was scored. One shot was off target and two were blocked. Leicester’s press was a problem for United and Maguire being rusty, having one training session before starting today after sitting out with a calf injury sustained in the defeat to Aston Villa, which was not helping United. That said, Solskjaer’s side needed to be more attacking in the second half of the match.

There were no changes for either team at the start of the second half. Both United and the Foxes looked determined to get a better result from this fixture, having chances in the early stages of the second half. Nemanja Matic had a good one, striking towards goal, but the ball going over the crossbar. Greenwood also had another good chance, which involved Schmeichel making the save, but the United forward being flagged for offside. Victor Lindelof became the first player to be booked in the match and Solskjaer brought Marcus Rashford back into the fray in the 65th minute, replacing Jadon Sancho.

United had a good chance between Cristiano Ronaldo and Rashford to find a second goal, but Ronaldo’s finish was saved by Schmeichel, but he was offside anyway. Leicester took the lead for the first time in the match minutes later after Patson Daka’s shot was saved by David De Gea but Çaglar Söyüncü managed to tap in a finish after Ayoze Pérez kept the ball in play. United look unable to gat anything from this match, which is going to delight those so-called fans who just want United to lose time and time again, which is pretty pathetic. They do understand that clubs that continue to switch the manager never really end up solving many problems?

United got back into the game with Marcus Rashford getting an equaliser in the 82nd minute, assisted by Victor Lindelof. But from the kick off, Leicester got ahead again through Jamie Vardy with Maguire just letting him volley the ball into the back of the net. United had found another defeat this season as this team was not going to find much to win matches with toothless displays like this one. There was tine for a comeback but it did not feel like one was on the cards. Patson Daka, in the first of five added minutes, got Leicester’s fourth goal of the match, securing the three points with United having to find a way to get back to winning ways in the league.

United take on Atalanta in the UEFA Champions League at Old Trafford on Wednesday evening, another must-win European match, which at this moment in time, does not look too good for United. In a week’s time Solskjaer’s side will face a resurgent Liverpool, which will be a problem for this toothless United side, who seem to have a lot of work ahead of them in order to find a team with some kind of form. At the end of October, United face Tottenham Hotspur away from home, which could work out what happens with the club this season as result are not in favour of the manager, the coaches and the players. Not a good position to be in right now.

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

Conceded four goals at the King Power. Not a good result. Had no chance to save the efforts of Tielemans, Soyuncu and Vardy - even Daka's looked tough. United's defence let him down today. Made a fair few saves too.

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29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

It was a positive performance for the right-back, just not positive for United. Did what he needed to do, but I would have liked to see more attacking play from the wide spaces.

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2 Victor Lindelof

Clumsy at times, especially for the booking after fouling Vardy. Got an assist for Rashfor's equaliser but it fell apart from there for United.

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5 Harry Maguire

Made a mistake which immediately led to Leicester's equaliser in the first half of the match. He was always going to be rusty after an injury layoff though, especially after having just one training session before the match. Made another leaving Vardy to fire a volley into the back of the net just after United had equalised. Leicester scored two more goals, one of them Maguire could have helped to stop but he let Vardy volley into the back of the net.

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23 Luke Shaw

Provided width, which United were lacking on the attack, despite having both Greenwood and Sancho in the side positions.. An attacking display and defensively, he did what he needed to do.

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6 Paul Pogba

Lacklustre. Ineffective. Void of any presence in the game. Should be better than this. If he's going to offer nothing, he may as well just leave now.

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31 Nemanja Matic

Seems to have turned back the years and putting in a good show of form and fight in the midfield this season. Had a speculative shot on goal, which was not far off putting United ahead for the second time. It was a poor result for United, but Matic did well throughout the match.

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11 Mason Greenwood

Scored his fourth goal of the season, which was a fine finish from outside the box. United deserved their lead and Greenwood deserved his fourth goal of the season. Had a few chances throughout the match but was unable to get the better of Leicester. Replaced by Lingard in the 80th minute of the match.

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18 Bruno Fernandes

Got the assist for Greenwood's opening goal of the match, scoring 30 goals and 21 assists in 59 Premier League appearances. Seemed unable to control the game when United needed that, so perhaps Donny van de Beek could have a go now?

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25 Jadon Sancho

Played well against Leicester but the critics will be out in force as he's not yet found the form he displayed in the Bundesliga. It's like people just use computer games to form opinions now, not real life. He will find his feet and perform for United. He was replaced by Rashford in the 65th minute of the match.

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7 Cristiano Ronaldo

Could have got a goal for United after Greenwood opened the scoring, but missed his chance. Seemed to be attacking very little and offering little going forward for large periods of the match. Something needs to give here and it won't be Ronaldo. United are in a pretty difficult predicament.

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Substitutes

10 Marcus Rashford

Replaced Sancho 65'. Glad to see him back. Got an equaliser, which was important but United conceded again from the kick off. Not a good game to come back for, but one to learn from.

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39 Scott McTominay

Replaced Matic 80'. Should have been introduced at least ten minutes prior to his introduction. Had some involvement but was unable to inspire United from the midfield. United scored one and conceded twice with him on the pitch.

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14 Jesse Lingard

Replaced Greenwood 80'. Did not have much involvement in the match, other than a shot on goal. Again, should have been introduced much sooner in the match.

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Goals: Mason Greenwood 19′, Marcus Rashford 82′; Youri Tielemans 31′, Çaglar Söyüncü 78′, Jamie Vardy 83′, Patson Daka 90+1′

Assists: Bruno Fernandes 19′, Victor Lindelof 82′; Kelechi Iheanacho 31′, Ayoze Pérez 78′, 83′

Manchester United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw; Pogba, Matic (McTominay 80′); Greenwood (Lingard 80′), Fernandes, Sancho (Rashford 65′); Ronaldo

Substitutes Not Used: Henderson; Bailly, Dalot, Telles; Mata, Van de Beek

Bookings: Victor Lindelof 52′, Aaron Wan-Bissaka 85′, Paul Pogba 86′

Written by John Walker

Confirmed XI: Maguire returns from injury; Ronaldo, Greenwood, Fernandes and Sancho start against Leicester

Manchester United return to Premier League action, travelling to face Leicester City at the King Power Stadium in a traditional 3pm kick off this afternoon. It has been a positive international break for some United players with Cristiano Ronaldo scoring a hat-trick in his last match, extending his international goals record for Portugal. United need to get back to winning ways in the league this weekend, righting the wrongs from the lacklustre 1-1 draw with Everton a fortnight ago. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needs to start finding the best of his talented team, which is why he’s got so many critics at this time.

United head into a busy period where they will face Leicester (A), Atalanta (H), Liverpool (H) and Tottenham Hotspur (A) before the end of the month, with Atalanta (A), Manchester City (H), Watford (A), Villarreal (A), Chelsea (A) and Arsenal (H) all coming before the end of November. Solskjaer will need to get the right results otherwise the pressure will intensify and the muppets on social media, who thing they are qualified to make adult decisions, will be calling for his head some more. These so-called supporters seem to proclaim that they have all the answers without actually giving any answers other than Ole out, which is pathetic.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw;

Pogba, Matic;

Greenwood, Fernandes, Sancho;

Ronaldo

Substitutes:

Henderson; Bailly, Dalot, Telles; Mata, Lingard, Van de Beek, McTominay; Rashford

Leicester City:

Schmeichel;

Amartey, Soyuncu, Evans;

Pereira, Soumare, Tielemans, Castagne;

Maddison;

Vardy, Iheanacho

Substitutes:

Ward, Bertrand, Barnes, Albrighton, Perez, Choudhury, Vestergaard, Daka, Lookman

United and Leicester have met 30 times in the Premier League. United have won 19 times, drawn eight times with the Foxes winning the remaining three matches. United have scored a total of 63 goals, winning four penalties and scoring three of them. The Foxes have scored just 26 goals, winning two penalties and scoring both of them. The Red Devils have kept 14 clean sheets with the Foxes keeping just two. Discipline has been an issue in this fixture with United players receiving 38 yellow cards and one red card and Leicester players being shown 35 yellow cards and three red cards. This should be a fiery match.

Over the years, there has been many players who have donned the shirts of both United and Leicester, whether just at academy level, or for the first team also. The likes of John Curtis, Mark Robins, Danny Drinkwater, Matty James, Ron-Robert Zieler, Brian Carey, Colin Gibson, John Doherty, Robbie Savage, Keith Gillespie, Ritchie De Laet, Tom Cleverley, Jonny Evans, Tom Lawrence, Michael Keane, Jesse Lingard, Nick Powell, Danny Simpson, Harry Maguire have all played for both teams. Maguire is perhaps the most expensive player to be involved in a transfer with his £80 million fee paid in the summer of 2019. There were some talented played named here.

Written by John Walker

Predicted XI: Rashford, Ronaldo and Sancho to spearhead United’s attack? Foxes beaten?

Manchester United return to Premier League action, travelling to face Leicester City at the King Power Stadium in a traditional 3pm kick off on Saturday afternoon. It has been a positive international break for some United players with Cristiano Ronaldo scoring a hat-trick in his last match, extending his international goals record for Portugal. United need to get back to winning ways in the league this weekend, righting the wrongs from the lacklustre 1-1 draw with Everton a fortnight ago. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needs to start finding the best of his talented team, which is why he’s got so many critics at this time.

United head into a busy period where they will face Leicester (A), Atalanta (H), Liverpool (H) and Tottenham Hotspur (A) before the end of the month, with Atalanta (A), Manchester City (H), Watford (A), Villarreal (A), Chelsea (A) and Arsenal (H) all coming before the end of November. Solskjaer will need to get the right results otherwise the pressure will intensify and the muppets on social media, who thing they are qualified to make adult decisions, will be calling for his head some more. These so-called supporters seem to proclaim that they have all the answers without actually giving any answers other than Ole out, which is pathetic.

Previous meetings with Leicester City and their connections with Manchester United.

United and Leicester have met 30 times in the Premier League. United have won 19 times, drawn eight times with the Foxes winning the remaining three matches. United have scored a total of 63 goals, winning four penalties and scoring three of them. The Foxes have scored just 26 goals, winning two penalties and scoring both of them. The Red Devils have kept 14 clean sheets with the Foxes keeping just two. Discipline has been an issue in this fixture with United players receiving 38 yellow cards and one red card and Leicester players being shown 35 yellow cards and three red cards. This should be a fiery match.

Over the years, there has been many players who have donned the shirts of both United and Leicester, whether just at academy level, or for the first team also. The likes of John Curtis, Mark Robins, Danny Drinkwater, Matty James, Ron-Robert Zieler, Brian Carey, Colin Gibson, John Doherty, Robbie Savage, Keith Gillespie, Ritchie De Laet, Tom Cleverley, Jonny Evans, Tom Lawrence, Michael Keane, Jesse Lingard, Nick Powell, Danny Simpson, Harry Maguire have all played for both teams. Maguire is perhaps the most expensive player to be involved in a transfer with his £80 million fee paid in the summer of 2019. There were some talented played named here.

Here is my predicted starting XI to face Leicester City in the Premier League at the King Power Stadium on Saturday afternoon…

Goalkeeper: David De Gea

United will need to be strong in defence against Leicester as they have the players that could bully the defence and score goals with Jamie Vardy already scoring six times this season and Kelechi Iheanacho scoring three times. However, United’s attack will devastate Leicester if they are not in a position to control the game. Having David De Gea in goal is the best option for United at this time, as he has largely done well in all of the matches he has played so far this season. It is possible that he could be rested in the Champions League on Wednesday evening with Dean Henderson getting a rare start after his fatigue problems after catching coronavirus.

De Gea has turned back the clock on his ability, showing the best of himself in many matches so far this season, and that will need to continue if United are to stand up and be counted as a Premier League title challenger this season. The club finished second last season, and at a point were in the top spot, but Manchester City’s resurgence, mainly their expensive squad of mercenaries led them to the title. United will need to show that kind of determination if they are to achieve anything to be considered success this season – which is evidently possible as they are just two points from the Premier League summit at this time.

Defenders: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly, Luke Shaw

The defence is going to be much weaker than it can be for the foreseeable future. Harry Maguire has not fully recovered from his calf injury and Raphael Varane suffered a groin injury during the international break, which saw France crowned as the UEFA Nations League winners, beating Spain in the final. Against Leicester, Solskjaer will need to stick with both Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw in the fullback positions and test a new partnership in the centre of defence, probably with Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly. The duo have played together many times, but both can be liabilities at times, and this could be one of those times.

Solskjaer has both Phil Jones, who has started his comeback from a serious knee injury and Teden Mengi who could also come into contention to start against the Foxes, but I believe that the Norwegian manager will opt for experience and not rush youth or a player coming back from injury. Jones has played 180 minutes for the U23’s since making his return from injury, so has some minutes under his belt, so you never know, he could be opted ahead of either Lindelof or Bailly. I think this duo is the most likely though and hopefully United will have better luck with Maguire ahead of the Atalanta Champions League match next week?

Midfield: Bruno Fernandes, Scott McTominay, Donny van de Beek

The midfield will be the problem area of the squad until some kind of strengthening can be done. It has been said during the international break that dropping Fred would be a good thing to happen and it would just so happen that he will not be available, along with Edinson Cavani as they could be playing on Friday evening in South America as Brazil take on Uruguay. With Nemanja Matic the only experience defensive minded midfielder, giving Scott McTominay that role could be beneficial in speeding up play, as long as Fred is not playing with him in a midfield two. Changing this formation and tactical approach could see United play much quicker.

Against Leicester, who have not had a good start to the season, United will need to be sure of their ability and push to win this match as another stuttered performance will not be good as the so-called supporters on Twitter will cause an uproar, if you even take notice of them in the first place. Staring Bruno Fernandes and Donny van de Beek in this formation would be a good test to the strength of the team, possibly bringing Paul Pogba into the fray at some point in the game, to see how that works too. Providing it does, United could solve a problem, albeit temporarily a they look to make more permanent changes in the transfer market or beyond.

Forwards: Jadon Sancho, Cristiano Ronaldo, Marcus Rashford

Solskjaer needs to change up his squad and feed them different tactics as the lacklustre style of play, keeping in mind the attacking players United have, is not good enough this season. United should be playing a quickly style of football and dominating with constant attacking, which should be enough for much of their opposition, at least in the Premier League this season. I think that Cristiano Ronaldo will lead the line as the striker, which is his best position these days, but he could operate in any of the three positions seeking to find space for other players. Fresh from scoring a hat-trick for Portugal, he will be up for scoring more Premier League goals.

I think Marcus Rashford will make his return from injury, which is at the right time but he will be a bit rusty, which means it will be better to get him started sooner rather than later. He has been in first team training for a number of weeks now, so he should have enough fitness, even if he has only played in one behind closed doors training match. Jadon Sancho should start on the right-wing, the position he was bought to play in. After his two assists for England during the international break, despite the criticism, I think he will start making his mark in the Premier League, which will come weeks after some kids said he was rubbish live on MUTV.

Substitutes: Dean Henderson; Phil Jones, Alex Telles; Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard, Nemanja Matic; Anthony Martial, Mason Greenwood, Anthony Elanga

United can name nine substitutes on the bench in the Premier League this season, utilising three of those. With the current injuries and unavailable players, Solskjaer will have to think about the players he has available and whether to trust youth or bring Phil Jones back into the fold. Dean Henderson will be the substitute goalkeeper with De Gea keeping his place in the team. In defence, I think having Jones over Teden Mengi would be better based on experience as United will need to win this match. I don’t have much confidence in Lindelof and Bailly, but they have worked well together in the past and need to be determined to try and win back their places.

In midfield, Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard and Nemanja Matic could all be called upon if needed. I think Van de Beek will start ahead of Pogba as he will want to show what he can do, which could also get him into the shop window ahead of January, with reports of him wanting to leave the Old Trafford club just over a year after he arrived. In attack, Anthony Martial, who scored his first goal of the season against Everton a fortnight ago, Mason Greenwood, who has been in fine form so far this season and Anthony Elanga, who could be seeking to fight for a place in United’s attack this season should all be available for the Leicester match.

Written by John Walker

Preview: Manchester United to change tactics in order to beat Leicester City?

Leicester City -v- Manchester United

Premier League

King Power Stadium, Leicester

Saturday 16 October 2021, KO 15:00 BST

Referee: Craig Pawson Assistants: Lee Betts, Dan Robathan

Fourth Official: Andy Madley

VAR: Darren England Assistant VAR: Eddie Smart

Manchester United return to Premier League action, travelling to face Leicester City at the King Power Stadium in a traditional 3pm kick off on Saturday afternoon. It has been a positive international break for some United players with Cristiano Ronaldo scoring a hat-trick in his last match, extending his international goals record for Portugal. United need to get back to winning ways in the league this weekend, righting the wrongs from the lacklustre 1-1 draw with Everton a fortnight ago. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needs to start finding the best of his talented team, which is why he’s got so many critics at this time.

United head into a busy period where they will face Leicester (A), Atalanta (H), Liverpool (H) and Tottenham Hotspur (A) before the end of the month, with Atalanta (A), Manchester City (H), Watford (A), Villarreal (A), Chelsea (A) and Arsenal (H) all coming before the end of November. Solskjaer will need to get the right results otherwise the pressure will intensify and the muppets on social media, who thing they are qualified to make adult decisions, will be calling for his head some more. These so-called supporters seem to proclaim that they have all the answers without actually giving any answers other than Ole out, which is pathetic.

Manchester United – Recent Form, Goals Scored and Assists: DWLLWL

Everton 1-1 D, Villarreal 2-1 W, Aston Villa 1-0 L, West Ham United 1-0 L, West Ham United 2-1 W, BSC Young Boys 2-1 L

Goals: 5 – Cristiano Ronaldo, 4 – Bruno Fernandes, 3 – Mason Greenwood, 2 – Jesse Lingard, 1 – Fred, Anthony Martial, Alex Telles

Assists: 7 – Paul Pogba, 3 – Bruno Fernandes, 1 – Victor Lindelof, Jesse Lingard, Nemanja Matic, Luke Shaw, Raphael Varane

Leicester City – Recent Form, Goals Scored and Assists: DLDWLD

Crystal Palace 2-2 D, Legia Warsaw 1-0 L, Burnley 2-2 D, Millwall 2-0 W, Brighton and Hove Albion 2-1 L, Napoli 2-2 D

Goals: 6 – Jamie Vardy, 3 – Kelechi Iheanacho, 1 – Marc Albrighton, Harvey Barnes, Ademola Lookman, Ayoze Pérez, Youri Tielemans

Assists: 2 – Harvey Barnes, Kelechi Iheanacho, Ricardo Pereira, Youri Tielemans, 1 – Jamie Vardy

Previous meetings with Leicester City and their connections with Manchester United.

United and Leicester have met 30 times in the Premier League. United have won 19 times, drawn eight times with the Foxes winning the remaining three matches. United have scored a total of 63 goals, winning four penalties and scoring three of them. The Foxes have scored just 26 goals, winning two penalties and scoring both of them. The Red Devils have kept 14 clean sheets with the Foxes keeping just two. Discipline has been an issue in this fixture with United players receiving 38 yellow cards and one red card and Leicester players being shown 35 yellow cards and three red cards. This should be a fiery match.

Over the years, there has been many players who have donned the shirts of both United and Leicester, whether just at academy level, or for the first team also. The likes of John Curtis, Mark Robins, Danny Drinkwater, Matty James, Ron-Robert Zieler, Brian Carey, Colin Gibson, John Doherty, Robbie Savage, Keith Gillespie, Ritchie De Laet, Tom Cleverley, Jonny Evans, Tom Lawrence, Michael Keane, Jesse Lingard, Nick Powell, Danny Simpson, Harry Maguire have all played for both teams. Maguire is perhaps the most expensive player to be involved in a transfer with his £80 million fee paid in the summer of 2019. There were some talented played named here.

Team News: Leicester have three players ruled out and one doubt with United having one player out through injury, two still on international break but up to three returning to action from injury.

Raphael Varane (Groin) is the main injury for United at this time and he will be out for a few weeks, which is a major blow for the club. Marcus Rashford and Amad Diallo have returned to training with Rashford training for a number of weeks, however, Harry Maguire still seems to be out of action. Solskjaer will also be without both Fred and Edinson Cavani as Brazil and Uruguay face each other in a World Cup qualifier on Friday evening, in South America, so both will be missing from this match, which is hardly a blow but it means that United will need to set up differently and possible even play different players, which could be a good thing.

Wesley Fofana (Ankle), Wilfred Ndidi (Thigh) and James Justin (Knee) have all been ruled out of the clash with United at the King Power Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The was once a time that with Ndidi missing, it could be costly for the Foxes, but with the addition of Boubakary Soumare this summer, the Foxes are fine without him. Jonny Evans (Ankle) has a 50% chance being available to face his former club, but will no doubt be subject to a late fitness in order to gain a place in the squad. Leicester will be hoping he is fit as he is one of the best central defenders at the club – he could be key for the Foxes.

Predicted Starting XI: Harry Maguire, Raphael Varane, Fred and Edinson Cavani all set to miss clash with the Foxes. Solskjaer will need to get his team playing a better brand of attacking football.

United started the season in good form, which has returned but in fits and starts but of late, they seem to have been lucky – which is not ideal. Solskjaer will need to find the right balance in the squad that he currently has in order to get the results that are needed to guide United back to glory, which is the next step for the club after almost eight seasons out of a proper title race. Solskjaer and his players know what they need to do in order to achieve things and they will need to work hard to achieve that – after all, United need to start winning trophies so we can see that they mean nothing to the so-called fans who incessantly moan on Twitter about Solskjaer.

Against Leicester, I think David De Gea will keep his place in goal as Dean Henderson has not had a good enough run at first team football this season, which could come in the Champions League against Atalanta. With both Harry Maguire and Raphael Varane injured, Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly will partner in the centre of the defence with Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw in the fullback positions. A three-man midfield consisting of Scott McTominay, Bruno Fernandes and Donny van de Beek could be interesting. In attack, Cristiano Ronaldo will lead the line with Marcus Rashford making his comeback and Jadon Sancho also starting.

Match Prediction: The Foxes were tough to beat last season but their form this season has not been the greatest. United will need to dig deep and find the momentum to get them through October.

Last season, at the King Power Stadium in a match that was played on Boxing Day, United drew 2-2 with the Foxes. Marcus Rashford opened up the scoring in the 23rd minute of the match, assisted by Bruno Fernandes. Harvey Barnes equalised eight minutes later, assisted by James Maddison. Then Fernandes, assisted by Edinson Cavani, scored what should have been the winner in the match in the 79th minute but an Axel Tuanzebe own goal in the 85th minute of the match saw the two sides grab a point each, which was not ideal for either at that time – although Leicester still bottled the Champions League places – for a second time.

At Old Trafford, Leicester beat United 2-1 last season. Luke Thomas, assisted by Youri Tielemans opened the scoring in the tenth minute of the match but Mason Greenwood, assisted by Amad Diallo equalised five minutes later. It was an even match from there but Çaglar Söyüncü assisted by Marc Albrighton found the winner in the 66th minute of the match, which was a blow for United – but they did finish above Leicester as they fell out of the top four for the second time in two seasons. Solskjaer will be seeking to find some form against Leicester this season, at least go for the double over the midlands club.

Leicester City 1-3 Manchester United

Written by John Walker

Ratings: Greenwood on the scoresheet as Leicester knock United out of the Emirates FA Cup this season; questions to be answered?

Manchester United were beaten 3-1 by Leicester City in the quarter-final of the Emirates FA Cup ending Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s hope of lifting the FA Cup this season. Kelechi Iheanacho scored a brace in the match, opening the scoring and scoring the third goal of the game. Mason Greenwood equalised for United in the 38th minute of the match, giving United a chance of getting something from the match. Youri Tielemans put Leicester back in the lead and it was something that United could not cope with. They now have two weeks with no club football to get over this and the fatigue of the past few weeks with United playing two matches a week the majority of the time. The agendas will be out during that time but the snooze button will be pressed.

United started the match positively after their Italian adventure on Thursday evening which saw them reach the quarter-final of the UEFA Europa League. However, Leicester soon got into the game with Jamie Vardy seeking to find an early goal, darting in behind Harry Maguire, looking for Kelechi Iheanacho in the middle but Alex Telles got inn there to clear the danger. The flag was then raised for offside. Leicester then started to gain some traction in the match with United making many sloppy mistakes. Fred was passing poorly and generally playing badly along with a few of his teammates. Leicester opened the scoring in the 24th minute with Iheanacho beating Dean Henderson after Maguire fed Fred the ball and he played it back into the box

United started to go forward to get an equaliser, playing a better brand of football with Mason Greenwood seeing Kasper Schmeichel made a save to deny him, palming the ball away. Minutes later, Maguire was booked for a challenge, which seemed a bit of a tough card, but not my decision to call. Leicester then tried to get forward again with Marc Albrighton playing the ball to the edge of the box which was eventually blocked. United got their equaliser, though Greenwood in the 38th minute of the match after Pogba beat his man, played the ball into Donny van de Beek, who stepped over the ball with Greenwood beating Schmeichel to put United level in the match. It was a good goal for the forward, his first for the club since January.

There was a few chances towards the end of the half and two minutes of added time were played. At the start of the second half, there were no changes made by either manager with the winner of this match facing Southampton in the Emirates FA Cup semi-final at Wembley, which will be played on either Saturday 17 April or Sunday 18 April 2021. United conceded a second goal to Leicester in the 52nd minute of the match with Youri Tielemans beating Henderson with the United goalkeeper unable to get a glove on the ball. Iheanacho got the assist for Leicester’s goal, which meant United would need to do a lot more to get level again, then seek the winner in this match. Solskjaer will not be all that impressed in what he has seen from his players.

United seemed determined to get back in the game, getting forward but not finding many chances. United won a corner, which was taken by Alex Telles, and came to nothing with Solskjaer readying four substitutions. They were made in the 64th minute with Luke Shaw replacing Telles, Scott McTominay replacing Pogba, Bruno Fernandes replacing Nemanja Matic and Edinson Cavani replacing Van de Beek. Albrighton became the first Leicester player to be booked in the 69th minute of the match for time wasting. Three minutes later, McTominay was booked for a challenge on Ayoze Perez, which seemed a harsh booking for the United player. United would need to dig deep and get something from this match, otherwise their FA Cup pursuit would be over.

Leicester scored a third goal which Iheanacho headed in, beating Henderson at the far post from Albrighton’s free-kick, which was misjudged by McTominay. It was such a poor goal for United to give away, they seem unable to deal with set pieces, which asks many questions of the players on the pitch and the coaches. This United side have been unlocked by Leicester too many times, which leaves the home side on top and cruising to the semi-finals of the FA Cup, giving United a free weekend in April, which might not be all that bad. Solskjaer made his final change in the 84th minute of the match with Amad Diallo replacing Fred, who did not have the best of appearances and will raise many questions about United’s midfield.

Manchester United

26 Dean Henderson

Conceded in the 24th minute, which was not his fault. Fred passed the ball back and Iheanacho pounced on it. Played a vocal role in inspiring United to get forward from conceding the goal. Conceded another in the 52nd minute with Tielemans scoring. Beaten a third time with Iheanacho heading at the far post.

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29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

He was busy in his defensive role and got forward a few times, despite no real influence coming from him. It has been a long season and it will only get tougher. United will need a backup player in this position.

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2 Victor Lindelof

The better of the two central defenders. Performed greatly on Thursday in Milan but today was not United's day.

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5 Harry Maguire

Was partly responsible for Leicester's goal in the 24th minute by playing the ball to Fred, who played it back into the box and Iheanacho pounced on it to beat Henderson. Will be annoyed with not keeping a clean sheet today. Vardy got the better of him at one stage but hit his shot off target. Not the greatest match for him or United.

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27 Alex Telles

He got froward a lot of the time he was on the pitch and tried to make an impact but he's not in the same form as Shaw. His determination is a good sign. His last kick was a free-kick, which was overhit and went out for a goal kick. He was replaced by Shaw in the 64th minute of the match.

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31 Nemanja Matic

As experienced as he is, his level of impact in this match was low. I understand why he started but it was not the right match for him. United need a defensive upgrade in the midfield. He was replaced by Fernandes in the 64th minute of the match.

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17 Fred

Did not have the best of starts against Leicester and was culpable in Iheanacho's goal in the 24th minute after Magure played the ball out to him and he played it back.

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11 Mason Greenwood

Equalised for United in the 38th minute of the match after Pogba played the ball into Van de Beek, whose dummy allowed the ball to find Greenwood to level the scoreline before the end of the first half.

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34 Donny van de Beek

His dummy to allow the ball to meet Greenwood was a great showing of his ability. His impact in the match had not been great, but he's hardly played this season, lately due to injury, so he will need to gain momentum. He was replaced by Cavani in the 64th minute of the match.

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6 Paul Pogba

Had some impact in the game and there were some worries that his ankle had been injured again, but he recovered form the challenge. He gave his all on the pitch but United needed to make some changes. He was replaced by McTominay in the 64th minute of the match.

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9 Anthony Martial

He was isolated up top and United's lack of creation left him seeking the scraps to no avail. Perhaps his form will raise after the International break, which could be said for United as a whole.

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Substitutes

23 Luke Shaw

Replaced Telles 64'. United's pressure on the attack was poor after his introduction, so he was not able to get much involvement in the match.

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39 Scott McTominay

Replaced Pogba 64'. Misjudged a head on the far post which saw Iheanacho score his second goal, putting Leicester 3-1 up.

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18 Bruno Fernandes

Replaced Matic 64'. Came close with a free-kick. Perhaps he should have started but fatigue has been showing.

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21 Edinson Cavani

Replaced Van de Beek 64'. Good to see him back with Martial's form questionable. United could not inspire a comeback from 2-1 down though.

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16 Amad Diallo

Replaced Fred 84'. Had a cameo appearances. Not really enough time on the pitch to discuss his impact.

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Goals: Kelechi Iheanacho 24′, 78′, Youri Tielemans 52′; Mason Greenwood 38′

Assists: Kelechi Iheanacho 52′, Marc Albrighton 78′

Manchester United: Henderson; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Telles (Shaw 64′); Matic (Fernandes 64′), Fred (Diallo 84′); Greenwood, Van de Beek (Cavani 64′), Pogba (McTominay 64′); Martial

Substitutes Not Used: De Gea; Williams, Tuanzebe; James

Bookings: Marc Albrighton 69′, Jonny Evans 76′; Harry Maguire 30′, Scott McTominay 72′

Written by John Walker

Confirmed XI: Martial, Pogba and Van de Beek start against Leicester in the FA Cup; Fernandes and Cavani on the bench

Manchester United will go head to head with Leicester City at the King Power Stadium this afternoon in the Emirates FA Cup quarter-final which will end club football for a two-week period because of the first international break of 2021. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will head to Leicester in good spirits after knocking AC Milan out of the UEFA Europa League after a 2-1 aggregate win on Thursday evening, which sees them face Granada in the quarter-final of the competition. Solskjaer will be seeking to send his team to the semi-finals of the FA Cup for the second year running, after reaching the quarter-final stage in his first season at the club. Brendan Rodgers’ side will also be seeking a victory.

United have faced Leicester twice in the FA Cup in the history of the competition, beating them twice; once in the final in 1963 and the other time in the fifth round in 1976. Of course, the two clubs meet twice a season in the Premier League and are rivals in the top four at this moment in time with just a point between them. Both Solskjaer and Rodgers will relish the break from club football over the next fortnight and this match is a must-win for both manager’s who are looking to guide their teams to a trophy this season. United have a good record of late, undefeated in their last 14 matches, which is good form. Leicester have been beaten twice in their last six matches, but this does not mean it will be an easy match for United.

Manchester United:

Henderson;

Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Telles;

Matic, Fred;

Greenwood, Van de Beek, Pogba;

Martial

Substitutes:

De Gea; Shaw, Williams, Tuanzebe; Fernandes, Diallo, James, McTominay; Cavani

Leicester City:

Schmeichel;

Fofana, Evans, Soyuncu;

Castagne, Tielemans, Ndidi, Albrighton;

Perez;

Iheanacho, Vardy

Substitutes:

Ward; Amartey, Fuchs, Thomas, Daley-Campbell; Choudhury, Mendy, Praet, Leshabella;

United and Leicester have met twice in the history of both clubs in the Emirates FA Cup. United have won both matches; the first being the FA Cup final on the 25 May 1963 with United winning 3-1. Denis Law opened the scoring in the 30th minute with David Herd scoring a brace in the 57th and 85th minutes. Ken Keyworth scored an 80th minute consolation for the Foxes. United then met Leicester in the fifth round of the FA Cup on the 14 February 1976 with United winning 2-1 with Gerry Daly and Lou Macari scoring the goals with Bob Lee getting a consolation for the Foxes. This will be the third time United have met the Foxes in the FA Cup and United will be looking for a third victory in a row.

In their last match at the King Power Stadium, which was played in the Premier League on Boxing Day, it was a 2-2 draw between the two clubs with Marcus Rashford opening the scoring, Harvey Barnes equalising, Bruno Fernandes restoring United’s lead then an Axel Tuanzebe own goal levelled the scoreline again. Last season, on the final day, United beat Leicester 2-0 at the King Power Stadium with Bruno Fernandes and Jesse Lingard scoring the goals which saw United finish in third place in the Premier League, earning UEFA Champions League football with Chelsea finishing in fourth place and Leicester slipping to fifth. The Foxes could get their revenge by knocking United out of the FA Cup this season.

Written by John Walker

Predicted XI: [4-2-3-1] Greenwood, Diallo, Fernandes and James to lead the attack against Leicester? Pogba, Cavani, Martial and Rashford all on the bench?

Manchester United will go head to head with Leicester City at the King Power Stadium on Sunday in the Emirates FA Cup quarter-final which will end club football for a two-week period because of the first international break of 2021. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will head to Leicester in good spirits after knocking AC Milan out of the UEFA Europa League after a 2-1 aggregate win on Thursday evening, which sees them face Granada in the quarter-final of the competition. Solskjaer will be seeking to send his team to the semi-finals of the FA Cup for the second year running, after reaching the quarter-final stage in his first season at the club. Brendan Rodgers’ side will also be seeking a victory.

United have faced Leicester twice in the FA Cup in the history of the competition, beating them twice; once in the final in 1963 and the other time in the fifth round in 1976. Of course, the two clubs meet twice a season in the Premier League and are rivals in the top four at this moment in time with just a point between them. Both Solskjaer and Rodgers will relish the break from club football over the next fortnight and this match is a must-win for both manager’s who are looking to guide their teams to a trophy this season. United have a good record of late, undefeated in their last 14 matches, which is good form. Leicester have been beaten twice in their last six matches, but this does not mean it will be an easy match for United.

How United have faired against Leicester City in the Emirates FA Cup.

United and Leicester have met twice in the history of both clubs in the Emirates FA Cup. United have won both matches; the first being the FA Cup final on the 25 May 1963 with United winning 3-1. Denis Law opened the scoring in the 30th minute with David Herd scoring a brace in the 57th and 85th minutes. Ken Keyworth scored an 80th minute consolation for the Foxes. United then met Leicester in the fifth round of the FA Cup on the 14 February 1976 with United winning 2-1 with Gerry Daly and Lou Macari scoring the goals with Bob Lee getting a consolation for the Foxes. This will be the third time United have met the Foxes in the FA Cup and United will be looking for a third victory in a row.

In their last match at the King Power Stadium, which was played in the Premier League on Boxing Day, it was a 2-2 draw between the two clubs with Marcus Rashford opening the scoring, Harvey Barnes equalising, Bruno Fernandes restoring United’s lead then an Axel Tuanzebe own goal levelled the scoreline again. Last season, on the final day, United beat Leicester 2-0 at the King Power Stadium with Bruno Fernandes and Jesse Lingard scoring the goals which saw United finish in third place in the Premier League, earning UEFA Champions League football with Chelsea finishing in fourth place and Leicester slipping to fifth. The Foxes could get their revenge by knocking United out of the FA Cup this season.

Here is my predicted starting XI to face Leicester City in the Emirates FA Cup at the King Power Stadium on Sunday evening…

Goalkeeper: Dean Henderson

Having started the last five matches in all competitions, there is no reason why he should not keep his place against Leicester. Dean Henderson has kept four clean sheets in those five matches with United beating Manchester City, West Ham United and AC Milan, drawing the other two matches; AC Milan and Crystal Palace – conceding his only goal in the five matches against Milan in the first leg at Old Trafford. David De Gea may not be fully match fit for this match, having sat out the matches due to the birth of his daughter some weeks ago. United should stick with the 24-year-old, who has done some great things for United and that clean sheet on Thursday night in Milan is a great feat for him.

Defenders: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw

United’s defence has done well recently, keeping five clean sheets in their last six matches. Eric Bailly is a doubt for this match so Victor Lindelof and Harry Maguire will probably partner each other in the centre of defence once again with Solskjaer having Axel Tuanzebe to factor into the squad, if he needs to. In the fullback places, for me, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw should keep their places. Shaw is having a great season at United and it is great to see, following his injury hit start to his career at the club. It is imperative that he keeps his form, which is consistent to United’s results at this time.

Midfield: Donny van de Beek, Scott McTominay

I would like to see Paul Pogba start for United this weekend but Solskjaer suggested that he might not be ready for 90 minutes of action. That said, Donny van de Beek should be starting as he will have 90 minutes in him based on sparingly starting for United so far in his debut season at the club. Scott McTominay should feature alongside him, which could create an attacking midfield with McTominay needing to be on top of his defensive work. If Pogba could start, or came on in the match, playing in the advanced role that is occupied by Bruno Fernandes would be a wise decision with the Portuguese magnifico clearly suffering from fatigue. United need to keep their best players fit at this stage of the season or it could all fall apart.

Attacking Midfield: Amad Diallo, Bruno Fernandes, Daniel James

It may not be ideal to start Amad Diallo in such an important match but I believe that he has it inn him to shine ons this stage. He changed the game after just five minutes on the pitch against Milan at Old Trafford and has not been used since – so his fitness is not an issue. Daniel James should play on the left flank in place of Marcus Rashford, if he is not fit enough to feature for United. He played on Thursday evening, but a mixture of injury and fatigue has led to him being in poor form right now. Bruno Fernandes will probably start, although if Paul Pogba can, perhaps he should be utilised instead, keeping Fernandes fresh for after the international break as you can see he is fatigued and should not be burned out.

Forwards: Mason Greenwood

Mason Greenwood might be the only attacking player with experience of leading the line on Sunday. Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Edinson Cavani are all doubts for this match, which will lead United with a big task on their hands. Greenwood is a talented player but it has not worked for his this season with just four goals and five assists to his name, which is a big drop from what he achieved last season. If Cavani or Martial is fit, they will probably start ahead of him, or at least be on the bench to add something later in the match if that is what United need. It is not ideal at this time, but it is something that United and Solskjaer will need to get through and persevere.

Substitutes: David De Gea; Alex Telles, Brandon Williams, Axel Tuanzebe; Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic; Edinson Cavani, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford

Solskjaer will be able to name nine substitutes on the bench against Leicester, utilising five of them in the Emirates FA Cup, using a sixth of the tie goes to extra time. The strength of the bench will bank on whether key players are ready to return from injury. In case they are, they have been added to the bench – but this is the best case scenario. David De Gea will be on the bench again, giving Henderson another chance to shine. In defence, Alex Telles, Brandon Williams and Axel Tuanzebe will be available. In midfield, Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic could be called upon with the injured trio of Edinson Cavani, Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford on the bench in the attacking positions, should all of them be fit to take part in this match, which is needed.

Written by John Walker

Preview: Solskjaer’s quest for a trophy could take a hit against Leicester unless United’s fortunes start to change

Leicester City -v- Manchester United

Emirates FA Cup

King Power Stadium, Leicester

Sunday 21 March 2021, KO 17:00 GMT

Referee: Craig Pawson Assistants: Simon Bennett, Harry Lennard

Fourth Official: Darren England

VAR: Stuart Attwell Assistant VAR: Matthew Wilkes

Manchester United will go head to head with Leicester City at the King Power Stadium on Sunday in the Emirates FA Cup quarter-final which will end club football for a two-week period because of the first international break of 2021. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will head to Leicester in good spirits after knocking AC Milan out of the UEFA Europa League after a 2-1 aggregate win on Thursday evening, which sees them face Granada in the quarter-final of the competition. Solskjaer will be seeking to send his team to the semi-finals of the FA Cup for the second year running, after reaching the quarter-final stage in his first season at the club. Brendan Rodgers’ side will also be seeking a victory.

United have faced Leicester twice in the FA Cup in the history of the competition, beating them twice; once in the final in 1963 and the other time in the fifth round in 1976. Of course, the two clubs meet twice a season in the Premier League and are rivals in the top four at this moment in time with just a point between them. Both Solskjaer and Rodgers will relish the break from club football over the next fortnight and this match is a must-win for both manager’s who are looking to guide their teams to a trophy this season. United have a good record of late, undefeated in their last 14 matches, which is good form. Leicester have been beaten twice in their last six matches, but this does not mean it will be an easy match for United.

Manchester United: WWDWDD

AC Milan 1-0 W, West Ham United 1-0 W, AC Milan 1-1 D, Manchester City 2-0 W, Crystal Palace 0-0 D, Chelsea 0-0 D

Leicester City: WWDLLW

Sheffield United 5-0 W, Brighton and Hove Albion 2-1 W, Burnley 1-1 D, Arsenal 3-1 L, Slavia Praha 2-0 L, Aston Villa 2-1 W

Top Scorers: United have scored 89 goals so far this season in all competitions with Leicester scoring 71. Are Uninted’s big guns going to be scoring at the King Power Stadium again this season?

Manchester United Goals: 23 – Bruno Fernandes, 18 – Marcus Rashford, 7 – Edinson Cavani, Anthony Martial, Scott McTominay, 5 – Daniel James, Paul Pogba, 4 – Mason Greenwood, 3 – Own Goal, 2 – Harry Maguire, Juan Mata, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, 1 – Amad Diallo, Victor Lindelof, Luke Shaw, Donny van de Beek

United are undefeated in their last 14 matches in all competitions; the 2-1 defeat to Sheffield United was their last loss 15 matches ago. In their last six matches, United have won three and drawn three, scoring five goals and conceding once, keeping five clean sheets, which shows defensive consistency – something that Solskjaer and his side should be proud of. United earned a place in the quarter-finals of the UEFA Europa League on Thursday evening, beating AC Milan 1-0, 2-1 on aggregate setting up a tie with Granada, which is a good draw for United, although they tend to struggle against the teams they should be beating easily. Solskjaer will be seeking a semi-final place in the Emirates FA Cup, beating Leicester at the King Power for the second time this season.

Leicester City Goals: 14 – Jamie Vardy, 13 – Harvey Barnes, 11 – James Maddison, 10 – Kelechi Iheanacho, 7 – Youri Tielemans, 3 – James Justin, Ayoze Pérez, 2 – Dennis Praet, Cengiz Ünder, 1 – Marc Albrighton, Daniel Amartey, Timothy Castagne, Hamza Choudhury, Wilfred Ndidi, Luke Thomas

Leicester are not in the best form at this stage of the season, despite challenge United for a second-placed Finnish in the Premier League. In their last six matches, they have won three, draw one and lost twice – scoring 11 goals, conceding eight and keeping one clean sheet, which shows that United, if in form up front, could get at least two goals like they did in their last two visits to the King Power Stadium. Rodgers will be seeking a victory though, earning a semi-final place in the Emirates FA Cup, aiming to win their first trophy since the 2015/16 season when they won the league and lifting the FA Cup for the first time since 1968/69 season. It has been a long time since Leicester won this trophy so they will be the team to beat this weekend.

Team News: Jones and Mata out for United with Morgan, Justin and Barnes missing for Leicester. Both teams are sweating on the fitness of players ahead of Sunday’s clash.

Phil Jones (knee) and Juan Mata (other) have already been ruled out for United, so they will not take part in the FA Cup quarter-final against Leicester City. Marcus Rashford (other) has a 75% chance of featuring for United this weekend with Eric Bailly (knock), Anthony Martial (hip) and Edinson Cavani (other) all having a 50% chance of being available. Solskjaer has not suggested that either Martial or Cavani will be out of action this weekend, but has given the indication that they might be. Paul Pogba returned from injury against AC Milan on Thursday, scoring the only goal of the game to put United into the quarter-final of the UEFA Europa League. Solskjaer does not think he could start but has left me wondering whether he will.

Wes Morgan (lower back), James Justin (knee) and Harvey Barnes (knee) have all been ruled out for Leicester, so will play no part in the FA Cup quarter final against United. Sidnei Tavares (illness) and Dennis Praet (thigh) seem to have recovered from their ailments, so will be available. However, Ricardo Pereira is a doubt, having a 75% chance of featuring whilst Cengiz Under (thigh) and James Maddison (groin/hip) both have a 25% chance of featuring. It gives Brendan Rodgers’ side some injury problems ahead of the visit of United in what will be seen as an important match for both clubs, who will be seeking to reach the semi-finals of the FA Cup this season, vying for a place in the final.

Predicted Starting XI: Solskjaer could have his card hidden up his sleeve this weekend with injured players still having a chance to return to fitness after midweek break.

Solskjaer could play a masterstroke this weekend in the final match before a two-week international break. Edinson Cavani and Anthony Martial did not travel to Milan for Thursday’s victory with the Uruguayan pulling up after the second training session on Wednesday and therefore ruled out of the match. There is hope that he could be fit, but just in case, I have set up a team without him and Martial in the starting XI. With Marcus Rashford’s injury problems continuing, he could be a doubt too, leaguing United light in terms of attacking players, unless all three are able to feature. If those that have been called up for international durst could not feature for their countries, two weeks out of action would not be the end of the world, would it. United > Internationals.

Match Prediction: United and Leicester have met twice in the Emirates FA Cup with United winning twice, scoring five goals and conceding two. Can United make it three FA Cup victories in a row against Leicester?

United and Leicester have met twice in the history of both clubs in the Emirates FA Cup. United have won both matches; the first being the FA Cup final on the 25 May 1963 with United winning 3-1. Denis Law opened the scoring in the 30th minute with David Herd scoring a brace in the 57th and 85th minutes. Ken Keyworth scored an 80th minute consolation for the Foxes. United then met Leicester in the fifth round of the FA Cup on the 14 February 1976 with United winning 2-1 with Gerry Daly and Lou Macari scoring the goals with Bob Lee getting a consolation for the Foxes. This will be the third time United have met the Foxes in the FA Cup and United will be looking for a third victory in a row.

In their last match at the King Power Stadium, which was played in the Premier League on Boxing Day, it was a 2-2 draw between the two clubs with Marcus Rashford opening the scoring, Harvey Barnes equalising, Bruno Fernandes restoring United’s lead then an Axel Tuanzebe own goal levelled the scoreline again. Last season, on the final day, United beat Leicester 2-0 at the King Power Stadium with Bruno Fernandes and Jesse Lingard scoring the goals which saw United finish in third place in the Premier League, earning UEFA Champions League football with Chelsea finishing in fourth place and Leicester slipping to fifth. The Foxes could get their revenge by knocking United out of the FA Cup this season.

Leicester City 1-2 Manchester United

Written by John Walker

Ratings: Rashford and Fernandes shone against Leicester but a point a piece could see Liverpool break away

Manchester United drew 2-2 with Leicester City at the King Power Stadium on Boxing Day. It was a good result for Liverpool, which could see them break away in the bid to retain the Premier League crown. Marcus Rashford opened the scoring in the 23rd minute of the match, assisted by Bruno Fernandes. He should have scored in the second minute too. Leicester equalised in the 31st minute through Harvey Barnes. Fernandes scored what should have been the winner in the 79th minute, assisted by Edinson Cavani but Jamie Vardy equalised for Leicester for the second time in the match to make it a point for each side.

United started well against Leicester, carving an opportunity in the second minute of the match which saw Marcus Rashford missed from close-ranger after Bruno Fernandes dinked in a cross from the left with the England forward having a free header from six-yards out, right towards the centre of the goal but his effort sailed over the crossbar. Leicester then got back into the match with Youri Tielemans creating something but Harvey Barnes could not take the advantage. Jamie Vardy then made a clear run through, dragging his shot wide of the target, but he was flagged for offside.

In the 23rd minute of the match, United opened the scoring through Rashford, who made no mistake of this effort. Daniel James did well to bring the ball up after a throw-in, passing the ball to Fernandes, which was not as direct as it should have been, but he stretched and gained possession. The Portuguese magnifico then played the ball into Rashford at the far post with the England forward scoring his 13th goal of the season. The lead did not last all that long with Barnes equalising in the 31st minute of the match after a Marc Albrighton cross was not dealt with with Harry Maguire, shoving the ball to Fernandes which led to the error.

It was still level at the end of the first half with United having five shots on goal, two of those on target, which was exactly the same for Leicester with the home side having 55.9% possession. At the start of the second half, there were no changes but there will be some in this half with both sides looking to secure all three points. Solskjaer made his first substitution in the 54th minute of the match with Paul Pogba replacing James. Leicester also won a free-kick after Eric Bailly handled the ball, which was strange as he was directing a teammate. James Maddison took the free-kick but got no advantage from it al all for Leicester.

Anthony Martial looked to have put United ahead in the 61st minute, breaking though the backline and beatinc Kasper Schmeichel at close-range. However, the flag was raised as soon as the goal was scored and VAR seconded that by ruling out the goal. This was merely a warning for Leicester, who would need to up their game to keep United at bay. Solskjaer made his second substitution, bringing on Axel Tuanzebe in the 66th minute after Victor Lindelof seemed to be struggling with his back. In the 70th minute, from a free-kick, Maguire had a chance to put United ahead, missing the opportunity.

Solskjaer made his third substitution in the 75th minute of the match with Edinson Cavani replacing Anthony Martial. It took four minutes for United to restore their lead with Fernandes scoring his 14th goal of the season, assisted by Cavani putting United 2-1 ahead with 11 minutes plus added time left to play. Jamie Vardy got another equaliser for Leicester in the 85th minute of the match, which seemed to be a slight deflection by Tuanzebe with the goal down to Vardy’s movement. It was another unfortunate goal to concede by United, who will have to get back to the drawing board in that search for a winner, which never came.

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

Unlucky to concede another goal. If he was on his line, he might have made the save. Hindsight is fantastic though. Conceded a late Vardy equaliser which left United needing to find another winner.

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2 Victor Lindelof

Played at right-back with Wan-Bissaka out. Did well against Leicester, despite United conceding a goal in the first half. His game was ended in the 66th minute with an injury. Tuanzebe replaced him.

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3 Eric Bailly

Played well in the first half against Leicester, which could be a good sign for United. Gave a free-kick after a strange handball, which was accidental, which Leicester got no advantage from.

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5 Harry Maguire

His error led to Leicester's equaliser in the 31st minute. Despite that, he has played well against his former club. Three points were not in the bag for United today with their winning streak away from home coming to an end, turning into an unbeaten streak.

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23 Luke Shaw

Got forward a lot of the time against Leicester. It is good to see him back again and playing regularly but in terms of what he offers going forward

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39 Scott McTominay

Seemed rusty after coming off in the final minutes in that 6-2 victory over Leeds last weekend. Needs to involve himself more in the match. He showed desire in the match and played until the very end.

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17 Fred

Played a good midfield game against Leicester. He is a player to watch in United's midfield, doing the job quietly. I'm glad it is starting to work out for him now.

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Ratings: Rashford and Fernandes shone against Leicester but a point a piece could see Liverpool break away

Helped drive the ball forward for Rashford's opener which was short-lived after Barnes equalised eight minute later. The Welshman was replaced by Pogba in the 54th minute of the match.

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18 Bruno Fernandes

He was in the zone again in this match. Created the first chance in the second minute, which Rashford missed, also created the chance for the one Rashford scored; his 10th assist of the season. He scored what should have been the winner for United, assisted by Cavani in the 79th minute.

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10 Marcus Rashford

Missed a sitter in the opening two minutes of the match which saw his effort head over the crossbar. Did not miss in the 23rd minute though, scoring his 13th goal of the season and his 50th Premier League goal.

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9 Anthony Martial

The Frenchman played a part in the game against Leicester and scored what could have been the winner for United in the 61st minute, but he was offside. He was replaced by Cavani in the 75th minute of the match.

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Substitutes

6 Paul Pogba

Replaced James 54'. Came on to add something in midfield and United's game started to improve when he was on the pitch.

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38 Axel Tuanzebe

Replaced Lindelof 66'. Replaced Lindelof, who was injured. Got an unfortunate deflection on Vardy's late equaliser. Defended well though.

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21 Edinson Cavani

Replaced Martial 75'. Came on with 15 minutes to play and assisted for Fernandes four minutes later. It should have been the winner.

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Goals: Harvey Barnes 31′, Axel Tuanzebe o/g 85′; Marcus Rashford 23′, Bruno Fernandes 79′

Assists: James Maddison 31′; Bruno Fernandes 23′, Edinson Cavani 79′

Manchester United: De Gea; Lindelof (Tuanzebe 66′), Bailly, Maguire, Shaw; Fred, McTominay; James (Pogba 54′), Fernandes, Rashford; Martial (Cavani 75′)

Substitutes Not Used: Henderson; Telles; Lingard, Matic, Van de Beek; Greenwood

Bookings: James Maddison 54′, Wilfred Ndidi 89′; Bruno Fernandes 45+1′

Written by John Walker

Confirmed XI: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer names strong team to face Leicester; Martial and Rashford back – change of shape?

Manchester United return to Premier League action this afternoon, Boxing Day, once again on the road as they travel to face Leicester City at the King Power Stadium. Last season, United won this fixture 2-0 with a Bruno Fernandes penalty and a late Jesse Lingard goal to confirm United’s third-place finish in the league and therefore a place in the UEFA Champions League, which they have now exited. United have started to turn their season around with a 6-2 victory over Leeds United in the league last weekend, followed by a 2-0 victory over Everton in the quarter-final of the Carabao Cup, setting up a semi-final against Manchester City.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be looking for another victory on the road this season as he looks to keep chase on Premier League leaders, Liverpool with Leicester in second-place with 27 points after 14 matches so far. United will have a game in hand over Leicester, playing just 13 times in the league this season but having just one point fewer in third place in the league at this stage of the season. Solskjaer will have confidence inn getting the upper hand over Brendan Rodgers, especially after the clubs current form and the fact United are unbeaten in their last 12 matches against the Foxes, winning nine and drawing three times.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Lindelof, Bailly, Maguire, Shaw;

Fred, McTominay;

James, Fernandes, Rashford;

Martial

Substitutes:

Henderson; Telles, Tuanzebe; Pogba, Lingard, Matic, Van de Beek; Cavani, Greenwood

Leicester City:

Schmeichel;

Justin, Fofana, Evans, Castagne;

Ndidi, Tielemans;

Albrighton, Maddison, Barnes;

Vardy

Substitutes:

Ward; Amartey, Fuchs, Thomas; Choudhury, Mendy, Praet; Iheanacho, Perez

United and Leicester have met 28 times in the history of the Premier League. United have won 19 times, drawing seven times and losing just twice. United have scored 60 goals against Leicester, winning four penalties and scoring three of them. Leicester have scored 22 goals, winning two penalties and scoring both of them. United have kept 14 clean sheets with Leicester keeping two. In terms of discipline, United have been shown 37 yellow cards with one red card whereas Leicester have been shown 33 yellow cards and three red cards. United will be looking to win their 20th match in the Premier League against Leicester.

Last season at the King Power Stadium, which was played on the 26 July 2020 (the final day of the season) United won 2-0 with a 71st minute penalty by Bruno Fernandes and a Jesse Lingard goal eight minutes into added time. The victory saw United confirm their third place position in the Premier League and therefore a place in the UEFA Champions League. At Old Trafford last season, which was played 14 September 2019, United won the match 1-0 with Marcus Rashford scoring from the penalty spot in the eight minute of the match. United were beaten 5-3 by Leicester on the 21 September 2014, a devastating result for the club.

Written by John Walker

copyright: JW