Manchester United face Everton on Sunday and we have taken a look at what Erik ten Hag’s side ca expect from their trip to Goodison Park.
Frank Lampard’s team come into the game in decent form, with their win over Southampton extending the Toffees’ unbeaten Premier League run to six games.
United will almost certainly face a 4-3-3, with Everton relying on the pace of their wide players to go direct.
Demarai Gray has been ever-present this season and is likely to feature opposite either Dwight McNeil or Chelsea summer target Anthony Gordon.
With Neil Maupay lively up top and £31.5m midfielder Amadou Onana an aerial threat breaking forward from midfield, this Everton team are happy to cross into the penalty area often.
With Vitaliy Mykolenko and Seamus Coleman (in the absence of the injured Nathan Patterson) both happy to get up the pitch, devileries from the flanks will need to be well defended from the Red Devils’ backline.
Lampard has reinvigorated Alex Iwobi this season, often playing him on the left of a midfield three.
His tendency to drift into the left half-space and play angled balls into the forwards has also been a feature of Everton’s direct style.
While the former Chelsea star did initially try to instil possession principles upon arrival at Goodison Park, Everton escaped relegation only after switching to a more abrasive style of football.
That style has continued into this season, with Lampard’s team currently the fifth lowest in the division for possession share-per-game and third top for tackles-per-game.
It is the sort of football that Manchester United struggled with early on this season, and the lessons learned against Brentford on matchday two will be tested tomorrow.
The physicality of the Toffees’ midfield could be a problem and United will need to be ready for a fight to maintain control of the match.
But with Everton often looking to commit players up the pitch during their fast transitions in a bid to ensure they win second balls; their own flanks can often be left a little open.
The raw pace of Marcus Rashford could cause an ageing Seamus Coleman no end of problems should the Irishman venture too far forward, as the Premier League’s September Player of the Month looks to continue his fine form.
Pushing Rashford out to the wing once again could be the key to ending Everton’s run and beginning one of United’s own.
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