After a tumultous few weeks in the Premier League, Manchester United will be desperate for some much-needed respite against Fenerbahce in the Europa League on Thursday night.
Jose Mourinho‘s men have only managed one goal in their last four league outings, dropping to the lowly depths of eighth spot after 10 games.
Their last European encounter, on the other hand, was far more fruitful: a convincing 4-1 win over Fenerbahce that placed Man United level on points with Feyenoord at the top of Group A.
Here’s our predicted XI for the contest with Dick Advocaat’s side.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic‘s goal-drought has now extended to seven games, and most United fans would agree that the Swede needs a rest – some time to recuperate and reflect, perhaps.
In his place: Marcus Rashford. The 19-year-old was an effervescent force on the left hand side against both Manchester City and Burnley, and his rip-roaring aggression, coupled with an unquestionable eye for goal, could pose problems for a back four that notably wilted at Old Trafford two weeks ago.
United, despite creating 37 chances, hitting the post and forcing goal-line clearances, lacked mental conviction in the final third against Burnley. With this in mind, Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s inclusion is paramount: the Armenian has an aptitude for controlling sustained attacking onslaughts, always looking to delicately split defences on a regular basis.
Such a persistent creative threat is exactly what Mourinho’s misfiring side will require in what promises to be a hostile environment.