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Europa League Preview : AZ Alkmaar vs Manchester United

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Manchester United travel to Holland to face AZ Alkmaar in the Europa League.

The early kick-off (17:55) Europa League game will see AZ Alkmaar host United at the Kyocera Stadion home to ADO Den Haag. Alkmaar are using their stadium due to a collapsed roof at their original home stadium.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be hoping for maximum points after the first two games if he wishes to finish first in the group. AZ Alkmaar may prove to be the strongest opposition United will face in these early stages.

How Do Manchester United Look?

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The red devils’ injury problems do not seem to be getting any better. Paul ‘Pogba did not travel to Holland over further problems with his ankle. The line from Manchester United being:

“Following a specialist’s opinion, Paul Pogba requires a period of urther rest and conservative treatment for the foot injury he sustained during the game against Southampton in August”

Manchester United Via Simon Stone (BBC) @sistoney67

In essence, Paul Pogba has been playing through injuries but still, people doubt his commitment to the club… Just sayin’!

As well as Pogba, Aaron Wan-Bissaka was also not seen travelling with the squad and will likely say in Manchester to recover from his tonsilitis.

On a brighter note, Diogo Dalot travelled with the squad to The Hague and will likely feature after not being involved since our last Europa League outing. Youth Academy players, Brandon Williams has travelled, as well as hot midfield prospect James Garner who has scored 6 goals in 7 games for the reserves this season.

Opposition: AZ Alkmaar

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Manchester United have never played a competitive fixture against the cheeseheads so Ole will be trying to achieve a 100% against them.

Alkmaar are 3rd in their domestic league, behind only dutch football’s giants Ajax and PSV. Their young Manager Arne Slot takes great pride in attacking football as per the Dutch philosophy, blooding in youth also.

Standing at 6″1, Alkmaar’s star name is youth u21 Holland international Calvin Stengs. The winger has caught the eye of many potential suitors in Europe’s biggest leagues. The 20-year-old has registered 6 goals and 7 assists in 15 games this season. Calvin Stengs is certainly one to look out for tomorrow.

Key Stats: AZ Alkmaar vs Manchester United

  • AZ have won only won 2 of their 12 games against English opposition (D4 L6)
  • AZ have won just 1 of their previous 6 home games in the Europa League (D1 L4) conceding at least 2 in 4 of the games
  • Manchester United are unbeaten in their last 5 games away from home in the Europa League (W3 D2)

AZ Alkmaar vs Manchester United is probably the most exciting game of the group. It will probably present as our toughest game in the whole group stages, especially away from home. However, if we have any desire of topping the group this is the sort of game we need to win. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer voiced his concerns about the Astro pitch in his presser. The conditions won’t be ideal but I look forward to an exciting game filled with youthful exuberance on both sides. Going into an important game at the weekend, a win tomorrow night will go along way into giving the boys some confidence.

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