Jose Mourinho revealed Paul Pogba will miss the Manchester derby on Thursday with injury which is a real blow for Manchester United and questions were immediately asked to who would replace him in the starting XI.
After selling Morgan Schneiderlin and Bastian Schweinsteiger, Man United aren’t littered with options and the obvious player to step in is Marouane Fellaini – a player who Mourinho has placed a lot of faith in this year. Will he start? Following Pogba being ruled out, I’d also be surprised if he didn’t.
Michael Carrick also starting gives Ander Herrera the freedom to roam around which he needs to shut down the space and press City but there’s no hiding how much of a blow it is to United that Pogba is out of this tie.
How will United line-up? Here’s a potential starting XI without Pogba:
Pogba was going to be the player who threaded balls through to our attackers and bridged the gap between midfield and attack. In his absence I expect Herrera to step up to the plate which means we’ll need somebody else to help cover with the more defensive side of his game, that somebody is more than likely going to be Fellaini.
United won’t be as fluid without Pogba in the team but there is still enough quality to cause City plenty of issues. Our problem here is the fact that with a two-man midfield at Old Trafford against City earlier this season we were overrun and Mourinho will not want to repeat that mistake again. Unfortunately, without Pogba it might be hard to dictate and control much of the midfield – United will simply have to do without.