Manchester United defender Daley Blind is eagerly anticipating his side’s clash with CSKA Moscow in the Champions League on Wednesday.
The Dutchman was left out of the starting lineup for the first time this Premier League season, as Man United cruised to a 3-0 win over Everton at Goodison Park. It was a brilliant performance from the Reds, despite Blind being an unused substitute, and it will be interseting to see whether Louis van Gaal makes changes to his side.
Blind has formed a fairly formidable partnership with Chris Smalling at centre-back but was left out of the team, along with countryman Memphis Depay, after the international break. The pair failed to take the Dutch national team to the European Championships next summer afterlosing to the Czech Republic and were both amongst the substitutes on Saturday.
Blind will be hoping he has done enough to restore his place in the side. However, Phil Jones put in a brilliant showing against Everton and it would be very harsh for him to lose his place. It could mean that if Blind is to face CSKA, he may have to do so as a full-back in place of Marcos Rojo.
The Argentine also had a brilliant game against Everton, one of his best since signing for the club and will have the right to feel extremely hard done by should he not start the game in the Russian capital. It is clear that Blind has his work cut out for him in order to win back his starting place and he will want to stake a claim for his place before the Manchester derby on Sunday. Manchester City visit Old Trafford in a crucial game, United’s third in eight days, and Blind could have to wait until then for his opportunity.
Van Gaal himself has said there will not be many changes going into the Champions League clash but two games in the space of five days could take its toll on some of the players. It could mean that Blind, who is well-rested after not getting onto the pitch against Everton, has a huge part to play in a critical derby on Sunday, rather than in Europe.