Manchester United manager Ralf Rangnick expects to welcome Scott McTominay and Luke Shaw back to the squad for tomorrow’s Champions League Round of 16 second leg against Atletico Madrid.
Bruno Fernandes will also return if he recovers in time from a positive Covid-19 test. If he does, United could, unusually, have a fully fit squad available.
We think Rangnick will employ a 4-3-3 formation for the game, with Saturday’s hat-trick hero Cristiano Ronaldo leading the line, flanked by the in-form Jadon Sancho and either Marcus Rashford or Anthony Elanga.
As Rashford started on Saturday, it could be more likely that the fresher Elanga will get the nod for this one, especially as he scored United’s goal in the 1-1 draw at the Wanda Metropolitano.
In midfield, despite a good performance against Spurs, Nemanja Matic will probably make way for the returning McTominay. Two games in four days is probably a big ask for the aging Serb.
Fred, who was also excellent on Saturday, will continue alongside Paul Pogba unless Bruno manages to produce a negative test in time.
In defence, we have been predicting for a few weeks now that Harry Maguire will be dropped but Rangnick has persisted with his captain despite poor form. However, an own goal and yet another shaky performance against Spurs must surely mean he now steps down.
Victor Lindelof and Raphael Varane should start if both are fully fit.
In his pre-match press conference ahead of the Spurs game, Rangnick said that Diogo Dalot could start one of the two games. This suggests that, as he started against Spurs, he will not also start against Atleti.
According to that logic, Aaron Wan-Bissaka will take the right back berth.
Rangnick will probably also recall Shaw in place of Alex Telles, who conceded a penalty at the weekend although he did also provide an assist for Ronaldo and offered plenty going forward.
Shaw is probably considered the steadier of the two defensively.
With all that in mind, here is our predicted XI for tomorrow’s game: