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Report: Southampton 2-0 Manchester United – Premier League 2 2016/17

Manchester United’s U23’s were defeated 2-0 by a resurgent Southampton at St Mary’s with Josh Sims and Jack Stephens both scoring in the second half with United left rueing their chances after James Weir missed the chance to score twice in the first half of the match.

Warren Joyce had a much-changed team this week with Dean Henderson in goal, Sadiq El Fitouri, Regan Poole, Axel Tuanzebe and Joe Riley in defence. Scott McTominay, Joshua Harrop, Matty Willock, Devonte Redmond and Tosin Kehinde were all present in midfield, with James Weir acting as the striker with United short of forwards in this age group currently. Sam Johnstone started a week ago, but he’s suffering from a knock, which keeps him out of action this week, though many may read a little more into it with the transfer window coming to an end in just over a weeks time. United started well, but soon conceded a free kick through Harrop, with United throwing all their players back to defend, which amounted to nothing for the home side.

In the seventh minute, McTominay ran into Southampton’s area, passing the ball to Weir, but he fluffed his lines and did not get his shot away well. United had a good chance to be 1-0 up early into the match. McTominay was playing in his proper position, after leading the line at times at the start of the season, and through pre-season. United had glimpses of good play, but Southampton seemed to be the side in the better form so far, but United have had a few good chances, which so far amounted to nothing. In the 28th minute, Henderson made a great save to deny Hesketh from twenty-yards out, tipping the ball over the crossbar.

Heading into the final minutes of the first half, James Weir again missed a goalscoring opportunity with Harrop taking the corner, the Southampton keeper failing to get a good grasp of the ball, it falling to Weir inside the box with the makeshift striker missing his shot completely. United could have been 2-0 up at the break of both credible shots were taken. No added time was played at the end of the first half. The first half ended 0-0 with chances from both sides, neither getting the better of their opposition. United will face a lot of work to do in the second half if they wanted to leave the South Coast with all three points from their second match of the season.

At the start of the second half, Axel Tuanzebe denied Olomola from a clear goal with brilliant defending, showing why Jose Mourinho rates the player, even after a few minutes playing against Wigan Athletic at the start of pre-season. Weir has changes positions, playing in a more recognised position for him, with Harrop now leading the line, changing it up a little to try and get the better of the resurgent home side. Ten minutes into the second half, Sims found the back of the net for the home side after a perfect pass from Hesketh. Tuanzebe did all he could to thwart his efforts, but the ball deflected off Riley past Henderson. United now had a lot more to do in order to rescue something from this match.

United nearly replied to Southampton’s opening goal through Harrop, but none of his teammates were near the ball in the box to get the better of the deflection from the goalkeeper. Good chance for United, but again not something that was taken all that well, or with much thought about following up the shot. It was, however, United’s first shot on target in this match. Southampton doubled their lead leaving United with a lot more work to do to get back into the match, let alone leave St Mary’s with three points. The home side had a corner, with Stephens left to have a free header on goal, pushing Weir out of the way, scoring the club’s second goal.

United made their first change with last week’s match-winner Demetri Mitchell replacing El Fitouri. Southampton seemed to take control of the match with Olomola nearly getting a third and finishing United, but his attempt was thwarted by him not hitting the target. United now had 25 minutes to rescue something from the match, something that would be short of a miracle at this moment in time. It would seem that not having a clinical striker is not paying off for United, but with James Wilson heading to Derby and Andreas Pereira and Will Keane likely to head out on loan before deadline day, risking them getting injured could stop them from heading out to gain experience.

United nearly conceded a third, again with Southampton on the attack. Henderson failed to keep hold of the ball with the onrushing Olomola heading towards goal, Henderson then got hold of the ball with the burly striker falling into the near post. After treatment, Olomola was able to continue. United was still looking for a lifeline to keep the game alive for United. From the corner, United could have done something to get them back into the match, but their resulting shot was cleared off the line by the home side. United have had many chances, none of them coming off. United now had another corner with 13 minutes remaining, taken by Harrop, headed by Tuanzebe, albeit mistimed with the Southampton keeper catching the ball. United seemed out of chances.

United face Chelsea at Leigh Sports Village on Sunday afternoon, kicking off at 13:05, live on MUTV. United will be looking to get back to winning ways against the Blues.

Manchester United: Henderson; El Fitouri (Mitchell 62′), Poole, Tuanzebe, Riley; McTominay; Harrop, Willock, Redmond, Kehinde; Weir

Substitutes Not Used: O’Hara; Sang, Scott; Whelan

Starting XI: Southampton v Manchester United – Premier League 2 2016/17

Manchester United U23’s face Southampton at St Mary’s in the Premier League 2 this evening. United beat Leicester City 1-0 at Leigh Sports Village a week ago with a stunning goal scored by Demetri Mitchell. Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, United’s left-back last week has since made a loan move to Wolverhampton Wanderers and will not play for Warren Joyce’s side this evening. James Wilson looks set for a switch to Derby County for the season too, so Joyce’s side lack a striker unless Will Keane is drafted in, but that would be doubtful. United will be looking to match the first team, who beat Southampton 2-0 at Old Trafford on Friday evening. Here are the starting XI and lists of substitutes for both teams this evening.

Manchester United:

Henderson;

El Fitouri, Poole, Tuanzebe, Riley;

McTominay;

Harrop, Willock, Redmond, Kehinde;

Weir

Substitutes:

O’Hara; Sang, Scott; Whelan; Mitchell

Southampton:

Lewis;

Valery, Stephens, Jones, McQueen;

Reed, O’Connor;

Johnson, Hesketh, Sims;

Olomola

Substitutes:

Gapes, Parkers, Wood, Mdlalose, Willard

Preview: Southampton v Manchester United – Premier League 2 2016/17

St Mary’s, Southampton

Premier League 2

Monday 22nd August 2016, KO 19:00 [Live on MUTV]

Manchester United U23’s face Southampton in the Premier League 2 at St Mary’s this evening. A week ago, United beat Leicester City 1-0 at Leigh Sports Village with a stunning goal scored by substitute Demetri Mitchell, chipping the keeper by some distance. This season, the U23’s seem to be lacking some players with Adnan Januzaj on loan with Sunderland, Andreas Pereira seemingly heading out on loan as he is not in Jose Mourinho’s plans for the current season, James Wilson, who is heading to Derby County and Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, who has just signed a season-long loan deal with Wolverhampton Wanderers, which should be a good move for him. United, the reigning champions of the Barclays U21 Premier League will now be looking to take the bull by the horns and aim to win their second match of the season, the first match away from home. Sam Johnstone looks set to play for the reserves in tonight’s match, much like last week where he was able to keep a clean sheet for the young Red Devils. Speaking to MUTV after last week’s 1-0 victory over Leicester City, Johnstone said:

“I enjoyed it. It’s a very young side but it’s a good side. Joycey has them working hard every day and that shows over the years as he keeps winning the league. I’m there to help them, being one of the older ones. I talked to them at half-time and full-time and they also talk to me. Everyone gets on and it’s a good group.”

James Weir played at United’s furthest forward midfielder, until the introduction of match-winner Demetri Mitchell, who may have earned enough plaudits to start against Southampton this evening. United have some good players in their squad this season, but the last of a striker is something that may cost the club this season, unless one of the U18 players gets promoted to the U23 side, of Marcus Rashford, a player who has not yet made an appearance in the Premier League this season, playing twenty minutes in the 2-1 victory over Leicester City in the FA Community Shield at Wembley at the start of the month. Jesse Lingard, who is currently injured could make an appearance for Warren Joyce’s side, as well as others who may need to play some minutes to keep themselves fit this season. Bastian Schweinsteiger, a player tipped to remain at the Old Trafford club, despite not being in Mourinho’s plans at all, may feature for the reserves, which would be good for the youth, but would surely drive negativity through the media aimed at the club, just like it did last season when Radamel Falcao, among other first team players, played for the U21’s – albeit a poor performance.

Manchester United U23 Squad:

Manager: Warren Joyce

Goalkeepers: Joel Castro Pereira, Dean Henderson, Kieran O’Hara

Defenders: Matthew Olosunde, Axel Tuanzebe, Regan Poole, Charlie Scott, Sadiq El Fitouri, Joe Riley

Midfielders: Scott McTominay, James Weir, Tosin Kehinde, Josh Harrop, Sean Goss, Devonte Redmond, Matty Willock

Forwards: Demitri Mitchell, Josh Doughty

Southampton U23 Squad:

Manager: Martin Hunter

Goalkeepers: Harry Lewis

Defenders: Will Wood, Alfie Jones, Yan Valery, Richard Bakary, Ollie Cook, Josh Debayo, Jason McCarthy, Jack Stephens

Midfielders: Armani Little, Jake Flannigan, Harley Willard, Josh Sims, Jake Hesketh, Dominic Gape, Sam McQueen

Forwards: Olufela Olomola, Marcus Barnes, Ryan Seager

Manchester United U23 Form:- WLLWWL

Leicester City 1-0 W, Oldham Athletic 1-1 (3-4 penalties) L (F), Port Vale 4-2 L (F), Salford City 5-1 W (F), Altrincham 2-1 W (F), Blackpool 3-0 L (F)

Southampton U23 Form:- WWWW

Liverpool 4-1 W, Queens park Rangers 5-1 W (F), AFC Bournemouth 4-3 W (F), Fulham 1-0 W (F)

Predicted Starting XI:

Predicted Score:

Southampton 1-2 Manchester United

Ratings: Manchester United 1-0 Leicester City – Premier League 2 2016/17

In a typically tough fixture at this level against Leicester, the young Reds managed to come out on top at Leigh Sports Village in their opening Premier League 2 match. An experienced Leicester side featuring Gokhan Inler and Liam Moore as well as former United academy players Matty James and Tom Lawrence proved to be a stern test and for most of the match they were on top, ultimately more than doubling United’s number of shots. The first half was a tame affair with Leicester looking the more likely, a powerful shot from Cameron Borthwick-Jackson straight at the keeper being the only highlight from a Manchester United perspective, but the second half was much more spiky and the game opened up, allowing more chances for both sides and keeping Sam Johnstone very active in what was a man of the match performance from him. Marcus Rashford watched on from the stands and no doubt would’ve been on his feet as his former team-mate Demetri Mitchell won the game for United with a well-executed lob after some route one work from Johnstone.

Manchester United

40 Sam Johnstone

A really impressive performance from the United keeper. He showed why he's above this level with countless important saves, one of which prevented an own goal from Regan Poole. "Switch on" was the call from Johnstone after the winning goal, showing his experience in comparison with his teammates at this level, being at the threshold of this U23 level at 23 years of age.

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Joe Riley

Another busy performance from Riley who was ever present both at the back and in the final third. Not much came off for him going forward and he committed several cheap fouls throughout the game but it was solid as you'd expect from the 19-year-old.

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Regan Poole

Poole was a key part of a sturdy defence which came under a lot of pressure. An important block to deny a good chance was no less than you'd expect from the all-action defender and he can be proud of the shift he put in although he has Johnstone to thank for not scoring an own goal when intercepting a dangerous cut-back.

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38 Axel Tuanzebe

The standout player of the defensive line on the night, it's becoming a common theme to say that he was solid in defence and hopefully we'll be saying the same about him in the first team in and for years to come. Assured on the ball as always and notably strong even up against experience, it was just another day at the office for Tuanzebe.

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Cameron Borthwick-Jackson

Up against Leicester's new signing Bartosz Kapustka, Borthwick-Jackson didn't embarrass himself at all and didn't look much like a player that had just returned from injury. He saw a decent effort saved in the first half and should have had an assist after his excellent cross ran across the face of goal untouched.

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Devonte Redmond

Much like Willock, Redmond was good in possession without doing anything too exceptional with it. He spread play well though and looked decent in the deeper role that was vacated by Goss due to injury. He still needs to impose himself more in matches both in defence and attack in order to catch the eye.

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Matty Willock

A tidy game from Willock, who will look to recapture his form from a very impressive season last year. He was anonymous at times but, much like in his last match, he looked to get more involved in the second half and he will hopefully build on that.

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Matthew Olosunde

One of the key components of United's struggles in the attack, it was a quiet match for the American out wide. He showed glimpses of what he's potentially capable of with some neat footwork under pressure and one or two attempted drives forward but he's still yet to make his mark at this level.

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Ratings: Manchester United 1-0 Leicester City – Premier League 2 2016/17

Harrop looks to be United's chief creator at Reserve level this season on paper and you could see why as he probed and attempted to orchestrate the runs of the men in front of him, although the lack of a recognised striker made things hard. A feisty challenge that on another day might have seen him carded was indicative of his grit and determination; everything about his performance suggested that he wasn't settling for a draw. He'll be looking to pose more of a goal threat in future but he looked bright regardless.

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Tosin Kehinde

The naturally central Kehinde found it difficult at wide left although he'll no doubt be grateful for the games time as he embarks on his debut season at U23 level. He was slick and assured on the ball although he created little apart from a pull back for James Weir after beating his man.

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Ratings: Manchester United 1-0 Leicester City – Premier League 2 2016/17

A stark lack of service was the main issue for Weir in the first half although he wasn't where he needed to be when the chances did begin to come in the second half. This was perhaps due to his unfamiliarity in the role, however, he was noted for his good movement of the ball last season. He looked lost at times and was careless with the ball although he improved when Mitchell came on, allowing Weir to move out to the left-hand side that he made his own last season.

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Substitutes

35 Demetri Mitchell

Replaced Matt Olosunde. The match winner; Mitchell came on and looked eager to impress from the get-go, probably culminating in a bit of over exuberance and some wrong decisions, his positivity though was refreshing as he took players on and made runs in behind constantly. He was able to keep a cool head for the chance that came his way as he hit a wonderful first-time lob over the keeper to give United the lead that by that stage didn't look like coming.

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Goals: Demetri Mitchell 87′

Assists: Sam Johnstone 87′

Manchester United: Johnstone; Riley, Poole, Tuanzebe, Borthwick-Jackson; Redmond, Willock; Olosunde (Mitchell 69′), Harrop, Kehinde; Weir

Substitutes Not Used: Henderson; Whelan, Scott, Tanner

Report: Manchester United 1-0 Leicester City – Premier League 2 2016/17

Manchester United started their new season in the Premier League 2, division one with a 1-0 win against Leicester City at Leigh Sports Village on Monday evening. United U23 manager Warren Joyce picked a strong side, despite not having a true striker in his team, based on the fact that the likes of Will Keane and James Wilson could be spending this season away from the club on loan, or move permanently. Joyce selected Sam Johnstone, an experienced goalkeeper to fortify his team, bolstered with Joe Riley, Regan Poole, Axel Tuanzebe and Cameron Borthwick-Jackson forming the back four. Devonte Redmond and Matty Willock completed the midfield, with the three behind the striker being Matt Olosunde, Josh Harrop, and Tosin Kehinde, with captain James Weir leading the line.

United started well with the ball, looking to break down their opposition. With no recognised striker, despite Weir playing in that role, the advantage seemed to be that Leicester did not know who would be playing in that role, with Weir floating about in the front three. Cameron Borthwick-Jackson looked lively in the left-back position, getting forward like he did for the first team last season, firing a shot towards goal. Matt Olosunde was another who was performing well – naturally a defender, but recently playing on the right-wing, which he has experience in as he started out as a winger. United were trying to do all they could to break the deadlock, but so far, Leicester seemed to be an even match.

Just after half an hour, United looked good on the attack through Kehinde, Willock and Weir going forward. The latter lofted the ball into the box, but he was ruled offside. United looked quick on the attack and determined to get something out of it. Leicester then kept possession for a period of time, before United regained the ball and attempted to break their opposition down again, to no avail. Tom Lawrence, a former United Academy player had a shot on goal with ten minutes to go in the first half, which was off target completely. United seemed to be dealing with everything Leicester could throw at them, but the same was the case for what United were trying to throw at Leicester. United need some inspiration.

Another former United Academy player Ritchie De Laet had a header on goal, which again was wide of the mark. Leicester also had Matty James playing, another former Academy player. They seem to have a few of those accumulated within their entire squad, an obsession maybe? In the dying minutes of the first half, Leicester found the back of the net, but the goal was disallowed for being offside. Sam Johnstone put in a good save to try and deny the shot. At the end of the first half, the scores were still level with few chances to change that. The second half would be something of a different affair with both teams trying to take advantage to find that match winning goal.

At the start of the second half, Leicester had a chance on goal through Gokhan Inler, a first team player not needed at the club, similar to Bastian Schweinsteiger at United, his shot was not something that troubled Johnstone. United immediately were on the attack through Harrop, who passed to Willock, whose shot on goal was on target, but direct to the keeper. Leicester again were trying to get something out of the match through Kaputska and Inler, with neither effort troubling Sam Johnstone. Axel Tuanzebe seemed to be having a good game, though, getting the better of Leicester every time he needed to get involved.

Manchester United made their first substitution of the match bringing on Demetri Mitchell for Matt Olosunde with Warren Joyce looking to add some spice to the game with Mitchell the most likely goalscorer for United. Both Leicester and United had attempted in the run up to the substitution, but nothing was getting the better of either side. Almost straight away Mitchell made an impact, but his resulting shot was thwarted by the away side. In the final 15 minutes of the match, both sides were getting lively looking for that elusive goal – Johnstone thwarted another effort from Leicester, earning his clean sheet so far in this match.

Leicester City’s Mitchell got the better of Regan Poole on the attack, but Johnstone stepped in to stop the away side from taking the advantage. Good play from the United shot stopper. Leicester were again on the attack in the final ten minutes of the match with the away side getting the better of Tuanzebe, which has to be the first time in the match. Tosin Kehinde stepped in and thwarted Leicester’s chance of finding anything to win them the match. Still all square.

United won a free-kick just outside of the Leicester area, with United passing the ball back instead of going for goal. The ball then finds its way back to Johnstone, who under pressure puts the ball out for a Leicester throw, which amounts to nothing. United then went on the attack, again with nothing coming from it, with Leicester doing the same. United then went on the attack with them winning a free-kick with Harrop looking to make a dent in the Leicester scoreline, but his shot was straight at the keeper.

With three or so minutes remaining, Manchester United goalkeeper Sam Johnstone put Demetri Mitchell through on goal after a lofted pass and a stunning run from the player, he then chipped the goalkeeper from a distance to put United into the lead. United were 1-0 with minutes left to play. United played the additional three minutes of added time, stifling out their opposition to holding onto their 1-0 lead, taking all three points from their opening match of the season. Next up for United will be Southampton in a weeks time at St Mary’s.

MUFCLatest.com Man of the Match: Axel Tuanzebe

Goals: Demitri Mitchell 87′

Assists: Sam Johnstone 87′

Manchester United: Johnstone; Riley, Poole, Tuanzebe, Borthwick-Jackson; Redmond, Willock; Olosunde (Mitchell 69′), Harrop, Kehinde; Weir

Substitutes Not Used: Henderson; Whelan, Scott, Tanner

Starting XI: Manchester United v Leicester City – Premier League 2 2016/17

Manchester United’s U21 Premier League champions start their season tonight at home against Leicester City. Last season, United fought off the challenge of Sunderland to retain the trophy they won a year ago in style. Warren Joyce’s side showed that they were capable of  beating the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City to the top spot, both of which did not have the greatest ever of seasons. United will be looking to get a good start in the Premier League 2, a new format in the competition where players under the age of 23 can compete, including an overage goalkeeper and up to three overage outfield players. United will be without a striker for much of the new season, with both James Wilson and Will Keane set to be sold on, or be sent out on loan. In the Lancashire Senior Cup at the start of the month, United utilised Scott McTominay as a striker, which could be something which is seen for much of the season coming. Here are the starting XI’s and lists of substitutes for both teams this evening.

Manchester United:

Johnstone;

Riley, Poole, Tuanzebe, Borthwick-Jackson;

Redmond, Willock;

Olosunde, Harrop, Kehinde;

Weir

Substitutes:

Henderson; Whelan, Scott, Tanner, Mitchell

Leicester City:

Iversen,

De Late, E. Moore, L. Moore, Wood;

Kaputska, Inler, James, Lawrence;

Mitchell, Muskwe

Substitutes:

Johnson, Bramley, Miles, Barnes, Ndukwu

Preview: Manchester United v Leicester City – Premier League 2 2016/17

Leigh Sports Village, Leigh

Premier League 2

Monday 15th August 2016, KO 19:00 [Live on MUTV]

Manchester United U23’s open the new Premier League 2 season as reigning U21 champions, facing Leicester City U23’s. Last season United dominated at this age level having the experience of Adnan Januzaj and Andreas Pereira to help them, but Warren Joyce’s side had potential before both were drafted in to help the U21’s retain their league title. This season the same faces will be present; James Weir, Joshua Harrop, Matty Willock, Dean Henderson, Sadiq El Fitouri, Joe Riley, Axel Tuanzebe et al. United will be looking to dominate once again, winning the first Premier League 2 trophy, to add to the trophies they have won over the past few years. The Premier League 2 might offer a bit more competition this season in that things have changed. Warren Joyce has noticed change over the last few years, saying:

“I’ve noticed the league has been more competitive over the last two years really. There were signs last year people weren’t sending their best players out on loan necessarily because they were keeping them and trying to develop them themselves. There were a lot of competitive games, some good football played, a number of games at stadiums and with reasonable crowds. 

“I noticed that last year and certain similar tactical problems crop up to those at first-team level to help develop the boys. I guess it’s a bit of wait and see really but the main concern is ourselves and just to set up in the way we want to play so the players know their jobs with and without the ball.”

This season, emergency loan moves are no longer allowed with all loan spells needing to be completed by the closure of the summer transfer window, which closes at 23:00 BST on Wednesday 31st August 2016. This will give managers like Joyce a little bit more surety with his squad, knowing that talented players who have not moved on deadline day will be with him until at least January, maybe the remainder of the season. Currently, Adnan Januzaj and Guillermo Varela are the only two players to have made loan moves to Sunderland and Eintracht Frankfurt respectively. Speaking of loan moves, suggesting that more players could leave in the coming weeks, Joyce said:

“I would imagine, over the coming weeks, a few more will leave on loan. They are ready for those steps and have got to be playing against men to show what they can do and push on from now. Once the window shuts, you know exactly what you’ve got and what your numbers are.”

Manchester United have seen a few players leave this summer, namely Joe Rothwell who left for Oxford United, Donald Love, and Paddy McNair both left for Sunderland and Nick Powell, now at Wigan Athletic. This may have left United a little short in the ranks with other players looking to fill the void. The Premier League 2 will now allow players under the age of 23 fill the squads with one overage goalkeeper and up to three overage outfield players allowed to compete in the squad. Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, a first team player last season, is not in Jose Mourinho’s plans for the coming season and could face a loan spell away from the club, could be involved if fit, as could Timothy Fosu-Mensah, who again played within the first team last season, but is again not in Mourinho’s plans for the coming season, but has a big future with the team – could also be involved if fit. Scott McTominay was drafted in as a makeshift centre-forward against Oldham Athletic in the Lancashire Senior Cup, with United losing on penalties, which could well be the case again, unless Will Keane will be drafted in as the striker, or even James Wilson, who both will not be involved in the first team this season, with loan moves or even permanent moves on the cards.

Scott McTominay was drafted in as a makeshift centre-forward against Oldham Athletic in the Lancashire Senior Cup, with United losing on penalties, which could well be the case again, unless Will Keane will be drafted in as the striker, or even James Wilson, who both will not be involved in the first team this season, with loan moves or even permanent moves on the cards. One player who will not be involved is Joel Castro Pereira who is currently representing Portugal at the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro this summer, with his side making it to the quarter-final stage, being beaten 4-0 by Germany.

Manchester United U23 Squad:

Manager: Warren Joyce

Goalkeepers: Joel Castro Pereira, Dean Henderson, Kieran O’Hara

Defenders: Matthew Olosunde, Axel Tuanzebe, Regan Poole, Charlie Scott, Sadiq El Fitouri, Joe Riley

Midfielders: Scott McTominay, James Weir, Tosin Kehinde, Josh Harrop, Sean Goss, Devonte Redmond, Matty Willock

Forwards: Demitri Mitchell, Josh Doughty

Leicester City U23 Squad:

Manager: Steve Beaglehole

Goalkeepers: Daniel Iversen, Max Bramley

Defenders: Callum Elder, Cedric Kipre, Elliott Moore, Josh Knight, Darnell Johnson

Midfielders: Michael Cain, Danny Rowe, Matty Miles, Harvey Barnes, Brandon Fox, Hamza Choudhury

Forwards: Admiral Muskwe, Kairo Mitchell, Layton Ndukwu, Raul Uche

Manchester United U23 Form:

Oldham Athletic 1-1 (3-4 penalties) L, Port Vale 4-2 L, Salford City 5-1 W, Altrincham 2-1 W, Blackpool 3-0 L

Leicester City U23 Form:

Notts County 2-0 W, The New Saints 2-1 W, Rosenborg 3-2 W, Chesterfield 3-1 L, Sheffield Wednesday 1-1 D, Nuneaton Town 2-0 W, Fakenham Town 7-0 W, Ilkeston 3-1 W

Predicted Starting XI:

Predicted Score:

Manchester United 2-1 Leicester City

Ratings: Manchester United (3) 1-1 (4) Oldham Athletic – Lancashire Senior Cup semi-final 2015/16

United’s Reserves faced Oldham Athletic tonight in the Lancashire Senior Cup semi-final at Leigh Sports Village and lost 4-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in normal time. Regan Poole crossed for Matt Olosunde who neatly tucked away a difficult volley to give United the lead, however, they were pinned back by Oldham not too long into the second half. United’s goal came against the run of play as Oldham edged the first half and would have been disappointed to go in at the break trailing, and it was much the reverse in the second half as Athletic equalised against the run of play against a much improved United side who equalled their number of attempts from the first half in the first three minutes of the second. How did the youngsters fair individually against the opposition and who were the stand-out performers? Find out below in the player ratings.

Manchester United

26 Dean Henderson

Henderson was reliable when called upon but unfortunately helpless for their goal which he saw loop over him from a good header. He made a crucial David De Gea-like save in the second half which kept out a certain goal and kept United in the game. He was unfortunate not to save any of the penalties but can be satisfied with his night's work.

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Joe Riley

As usual, lung-busting runs up and down the flanks were the order of the day for Riley. Co-commentator Andy Ritchie said "you know what you're gonna get with Riley, 100 percent effort", which sums up the player and was reflected in his performance. He was solid in defence as his improvement in that aspect continues to show.

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38 Axel Tuanzebe

Another impressive display from the highly rated Tuanzebe, who provided a crucial block in the first half, typical of his committed character. He didn't look out-of-place against more experienced opponents and often looked like a senior player stepping down. He got forward a lot more in the second half to good effect as he showed off his skill on the ball.

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Regan Poole

A rare match in his natural position at centre back, Poole was a prime example of the side's improvement in the second half as he became more assured both with and without possession. A good cross into the box following an overhit corner from Sean Goss provided the assist for Olosunde's opener. Scored his penalty in the shoot-out (just).

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Ratings: Manchester United (3) 1-1 (4) Oldham Athletic – Lancashire Senior Cup semi-final 2015/16

A tough night for the Libyan-born youngster as he was tested thoroughly defensively. He was fortunate not to concede what looked like a penalty in the first half and was later caught out in the air for Oldham's goal as he lost his man. Had one or two bright moments going forward with little result and he'll be looking to improve upon this outing.

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Devonte Redmond

Two tame efforts typified his overall performance as Redmond failed to gain control in what was a tough battle in the middle of the park. He at times looked like a boy amongst men although he looked a bit better as the game went on. Scored his penalty confidently in the shootout.

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Matty Willock

Not Willock's finest game. Another of the players that looked slightly overawed early on, his runs forward didn't come off like they usually would and he may well have suited a slightly deeper position than he was in, as he wasn't granted the driving space he wanted. He stepped it up in the second half, as more things began to come off for him before being replaced late in the match.

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Ratings: Manchester United (3) 1-1 (4) Oldham Athletic – Lancashire Senior Cup semi-final 2015/16

It's good to see Goss back in action after his lengthy lay off that meant he missed most of the last season but he was able to put in a performance that showed glimpses of why he was taken on the 2015 pre-season tour with the first team. Dictating the tempo and setting up his more attacking colleagues, Goss looked comfortable in the middle, although defensively he could've contributed more as the deepest lying midfielder. Taking up the armband after James Weir was forced off at half-time, he put in a good showing and led by example by scoring his penalty in the shoot-out defeat.

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Matthew Olosunde

In his first start at this level, Matt Olosunde got his goal playing in the unfamiliar position of right-wing, the goal was well-executed volley that he scored from an awkward body position and shocked the opposition. He was tidy in possession and picked his opportunities well to drive forward, showing some skill although his limitations further up the field showed at times, understandable for a more defence minded player.

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39 Scott McTominay

Playing in the unfamiliar role of striker, McTominay was unable to hold up the ball well enough to bring others behind him into play. He was a constant nuisance for the defenders as always and was often first to any balls into the box. He saw a good chance that he'd fashioned himself to go two nil up saved and another blocked. It was a frustrating night for someone who is usually a box-to-box player but taking one for the team, as he had the first of United's penalties saved in the shootout.

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Ratings: Manchester United (3) 1-1 (4) Oldham Athletic – Lancashire Senior Cup semi-final 2015/16

The captain didn't have his best game, struggling to link up effectively with Riley once the fullback switched to the left and also failing to provide enough width on his side of the pitch. He was, however, tidy in possession and positive in the final third.

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Substitutes

35 Demetri Mitchell

Replaced Matt Olosunde. The exciting winger came on and added some impetus to United's cause and looked likely to be a creator or scorer. he'll wish he had more time on the pitch given he had two in two in the matches preceding this one. A cheeky panenka penalty didn't come off as it drifted just over the bar which meant the next successful penalty for Oldham won them the match.

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Tosin Kehinde

Replaced James Weir. The livewire added energy to midfield and he got himself involved in a lot of the build up play although he was unable to provide the killer pass or goal needed to get the result. Kept possession well and will be hoping to get a chance away from the left-wing and in central midfield next time around.

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Callum Gribbin

Replaced Matty Willock. The 17-year-old saw a curling effort fly marginally over in United's last chance of the game but the young playmaker had little time to make an impact.

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Starting XI: Manchester United v Oldham Athletic – Lancashire Senior Cup semi-final 2015/16

Manchester United Reserves face Oldham Athletic in the semi-final of the Lancashire Senior Cup at Leigh Sports Village this evening, with the winners facing Everton in the final, which should be played in the coming weeks. United’s reserve side have played three matches in their pre-season thus far, winning twice; 2-1 against Altrincham and 5-1 against Salford City, also losing once; a 4-1 defeat to Port Vale. United retained the Barclays U21 Premier League last season, and as this match is in last season’s competition, could be close to completing a double. Oldham could field their first team in this match, especially after being beaten by United’s reserves in a 4-0 clash between the two sides in the Manchester Senior Cup in March. Here are the starting XI’s and list of substitutes for both teams this evening.

Manchester United:

Henderson;

Riley, Tuanzebe, Poole, El Fitouri;

Redmond, Willock, Goss;

Olosunde, McTominay, Weir

Substitutes:

Mitchell, O’Hara, Warren, Kehinde, Gribbin

Oldham Athletic:

Kettings;

Mantack, Edmunsson, Stott, Brown;

Klok, Woodland, Fane, Winchester;

Osei, Cassidy

Substitutes:

Scullion, O’Neill, Knight, Glackin, King

copyright: JW