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Predicted Man United XI vs Reading: Fred to start and David de Gea rested

by Red Billy

Luke Shaw is a doubt for Manchester United’s home FA Cup tie with Reading on Saturday after missing Wednesday’s clash with Nottingham Forest with a virus.

It will be interesting to see how much rotating manager Erik ten Hag does, given that the next match, the return leg of that Forest semi-final, should be a straightforward affair as the Reds bring a 3-0 lead back to Old Trafford.

Against Reading, we think either Tom Heaton or Jack Butland could be brought in for David de Gea in goal, just to ring the changes in the Cup.

Diogo Dalot has not as yet returned to training so we expect Aaron Wan-Bissaka to continue at right back, although a lot is being placed on his shoulders with games coming thick and fast.

Raphael Varane might be kept a bit longer in cotton wool against the Championship side and although Harry Maguire will be eligible again after serving a suspension, Ten Hag might opt to leave the Lindelof-Lisandro partnership unchanged after their excellent outing against Forest.

Whether or not Shaw is available, Tyrell Malacia could well continue at left back. His midweek display was arguably his best yet in a United shirt so he is a more than able deputy for Shaw.

In midfield, there could be some rotation among Casemiro, Christian Eriksen and Bruno Fernandes over the course of these next two matches. We have gone for Bruno being rested against Reading and perhaps the other two against Forest next Wednesday, but it could be any combination of the three each time. We have gone for a midfield combo of Casemiro-Eriksen-Fred on this occasion.

Scott McTominay is another option.

The same is true for the wings, but we think Marcus Rashford and Antony will start against Reading to try to get the job done quickly and efficiently, with their rest day being pencilled in for Forest.

Alejandro Garnacho, Facundo Pellistri and Anthony Elanga are other options.

If Anthony Martial remains unavailable, Wout Weghorst will probably continue at centre forward.

Ten Hag intimated that Jadon Sancho might also have some involvement over the next couple of weeks, so a cameo from the bench could take place against the Royals.

With all that in mind, here is our predicted line-up for the game:


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