Manchester United head into Wednesday night’s game against Crystal Palace knowing that anything but a win could call time on our late push for a top four finish.
With that in mind, here are three players who I think Man United must start if we are to really put Palace to the sword and make sure we don’t repeat the tentative performance against Aston Villa which we were luckily not to be punished for.
Are Man United reliant on an 18-year-old or is he simply warranting his place in the team every single week with outstanding performances? Probably, definitely, a bit of both but you just can’t take him out of the side right now. He was the difference at West Ham and against Aston Villa within the space of a week, who is to say he won’t do the same on Wednesday night versus a very under par Palace side?
Rested against Villa at the weekend, Martial needs to come back into this team. I thought Memphis Depay played pretty well on Saturday but without taking anything away from him, Martial is a cut above this season. Without him, our attacking threat from out wide significantly dropped and the fact we scraped a 1-0 win over Villa was indicative.
Just as much as we need Rashford, Martial is irreplaceable in our team at the moment and having both of these youngsters in our starting XI gives us an unpredictability in attack we can’t do without.
Antonio Valencia started on Saturday and got himself an assist but nobody is under any illusion as to who is the better right-back between him and Fosu-Mensah. Valencia’s never been the same following a string of serious injuries and he’s too one-dimensional to be a modern day full-back.
Fosu-Mensah has burst onto the scene much like Rashford did, albeit in somewhat less spectacular form, so we need to keep that momentum in the team rather than resorting to bringing back too many senior players when they become available.