Manchester United Preview: An Epic Rivalry Renewed
Manchester United takes on Arsenal in the MetLife Stadium, New Jersey, tonight to renew what has been an epic rivalry for the ages. The last time Arsenal and Manchester United clashed was in the Premier League, with Eddie Nketiah delivering a sucker punch that sank the hearts of all fans connected with the Old Trafford outfit. It was a pulsating encounter that served the neutrals well.
Manchester United has been in the spotlight over a proposed sale from the Glazers to another set of Middle Eastern oligarchs, but in the transfer window, they signed the versatile Mason Mount from Chelsea and after ending a 12-year stint with their legendary goalie, David de Gea, the club quickly sorted out the signing of Andre Onana from Inter Milan. Erik Ten Hag sure likes to work with his former players, with Onana joining Lisandro Martinez and Antony as former Ten Hag players that have reignited their alliances with him.
In terms of preseason encounters, Manchester United began their campaign with a clash with the old enemy, Leeds United, in Oslo, Viking Land. Mount started the game and played 45 minutes, but it was the kids that stole the show with goals from Emeran and Hugill. Their next encounter was against Olympique Lyonnais in Edinburgh, with ex-Gunner, Alexandre Lacazette, leading the French team out to action, but it was a cagey affair with the Red Devils edging Lyon out courtesy of a goal from another Ten Hag Ajax recruit, Ronny Van der Beek.
Arsenal, on the other hand, began their preseason adventure with a draw against Watford in London Colney, which was followed with a draw against Nurnberg in Bavaria, which saw Kai Havertz make his debut, but the Gunners visit to the United States have been eventful to say the least. First, there was the skills challenge against the MLS All Stars, which brought a few laughs and then the business was done on the pitch, with the Gunners running out as 5-0 winners against MLS’ finest.
The game against MLS All Stars took place around 1.30am and in all honesty, I didn’t watch the game, but I saw the highlights and I loved what I saw, besides the away kit of course. Gabriel Jesus chipped effort was all shades of sexy, Leandro Trossard showed his versatility and how dangerous he could be at the edge of the box, we were graced with some Jorginho jumping frog penalty skills, that Martinelli Odegaard pass to Gabriel Martinelli brought back sweet memories of the victory over Brighton, and it was good to see Havertz get in on the scoring act, especially how much he was trolled for not delivering in the skills challenge.
However, what I enjoyed most about the 5-0 drubbing of the MLS All Stars, were the debuts of Declan Rice and Jurrien Timber. Timber was a monster on the pitch and interestingly, Rice, somewhat played the Granit Xhaka left 8 role, which bodes well for him playing alongside Thomas Partey, who flew to the United States with Emile Smith-Rowe.
With Manchester United being a tough opponent, I would expect Arteta and Ten Hag to feature their strongest lineups to please their fans in the United States and the rest of the world with a Premier League worthy encounter.
Arsenal vs Manchester United Predicted Lineups
Arsenal: Ramsdale; White, Saliba, Gabriel, Zinchenko; Havertz, Jorginho, Odegaard; Martinelli, Jesus, Saka.
Manchester United: Kovar; Wan Bissaka, Varane, Martinez, Williams; Fred, Mount, van der Beek; Antony, Sancho, Amad
Injury / Suspension Updates
Arsenal: Albert Sambi Lokonga (muscle), Nuno Taveres, Matt Turner (holidays)
Manchester United: Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes (holidays), Harry Maguire (for being Maguire)
- Last Five Games: L W D D W
- Last Result: MLS All Stars 0-5 Arsenal (Jesus 5′, Trossard 23′, Jorginho 47′, Martinelli 84′, Havertz 88′)
- Leading Goalscorer: Gabriel Martinelli, Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard (15 – last season)
Manchester United Form
- Last Five Games: W W L W W
- Last Result: Manchester United 1-0 Lyon (van der Beek 49’)
- Leading Goalscorer: Marcus Rashford (30 – last season)
Gooner Daily predicts a 2-1 win.
Kick Off – 10.00pm (GMT +1) at MetLife Stadium.
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