Home » Donny van de Beek expected to start: predicted Man United XI vs Aston Villa

Donny van de Beek expected to start: predicted Man United XI vs Aston Villa

by Red Billy

Manchester United will be without Scott McTominay and Luke Shaw for their Premier League clash against Aston Villa in Birmingham tomorrow.

The pair are suspended having each accumulated five yellow cards.

United boss Ralf Rangnick admitted after Monday’s FA Cup tie against the same side that he had learned United need to play with three in midfield, praising the impact of Donny van de Beek, who came on as sub in the 70th minute.

Those two facts, plus those that McTominay is suspended and Paul Pogba remains absent, would suggest that the midfield will almost pick itself, with Nemanja Matic, Fred and Van de Beek the only three recognised central midfielders available.

On the other hand, Rangnick could spring a surprise and play Bruno Fernandes in the number eight position that he made his own at Sporting Lisbon, but that’s probably unlikely away from home.

In defence, Diogo Dalot has probably done enough to keep the right back slot ahead of Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Alex Telles will almost certainly deputise for Luke Shaw on the left flank.

At centre back, captain Harry Maguire is fit again and will probably return alongside Raphael Varane, although on current form both Victor Lindelof and Phil Jones might feel that they should start ahead of the England man.

Jones was reportedly neither injured nor dropped but ‘rested’ on Monday night and is in contention for a recall.

Rangnick tends to like a twin striker system so given that he will adopt a 3-man midfield, he could play a single number 10 behind two strikers. If fit, Cristiano Ronaldo will probably return alongside Edi Cavani, with Bruno, Mason Greenwood, Marcus Rashford or Jadon Sancho behind them.

A front three of Ronaldo, Cavani and Fernandes seems unlikely as it lacks pace, so it could mean that Bruno is consigned to the bench again for this tie.

Sancho has been carrying a knock and Rashford was very poor last time out so Greenwood should get the call.

The Sun is reporting that Ronaldo left training early yesterday with a thigh strain and is doubtful for the game.

If either he or Cavani is absent, we think it’s more likely that Fernandes will stay in the number ten position, with one of the younger, faster players up front.

With all that in mind, here is our predicted starting XI for tomorrow’s game:

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