Manchester United are the most in-form side in the Premier League but their recent positive results have all come against teams from the bottom half of the table.
Their next test against Newcastle United will be a great marker to understand where Erik ten Hag’s team currently lie. The last time the two sides met this season was in the Carabao Cup where Eddie Howe’s team emerged 3-0 victors.
United had lost at St James’ Park last season and their preparations for the game was far from ideal as the team’s flight to Newcastle upon Tyne was cancelled at the last moment.
Shaw as LCB
As per Manchester World, the Dutch manager is contemplating making a tactical change ahead of tonight’s encounter with Luke Shaw set to start as centre-back.
Since his return from injury, the Englishman has played in the Everton and Galatasaray matches in his familiar left-back position.
Ten Hag has utilised this ploy in the past, especially in the absence of Lisandro Martinez, who suffered a season-ending injury last term.
The Argentine is currently sidelined and United have played Victor Lindelof in that position and while the Swede does possess fantastic vision, a left-footed defender naturally has more angles to pass to.
Ten Hag’s preference for a left-footed defender is also partly responsible for Raphael Varane‘s reduction in game time with Ten Hag reluctant to pair the both of them.
Ploy worked wonders last season
Shaw’s passing ability is certainly underrated and he can effectively help the side play out from the back against a rampant Magpies at home. This will mean either Diogo Dalot or Sergio Reguilon plays as the left-back.
“Erik ten Hag is considering deploying Luke Shaw at centre-back for Saturday’s trip to Newcastle United, ManchesterWorld understands.
“With Martinez injured, Shaw is United’s only real left-footed option in that role and could line up alongside Maguire at the heart of defence against Newcastle, with Sergio Reguilon starting at left full-back.”
Last season, Shaw was excellent at the heart of defence and United fans will hope that the tactical shift ends up working as United prepare for the busy festive period.