Down The Wings

Manchester United Fan Blog

Match Preview: Everton vs Manchester United

With eight games remaining Manchester United’s season is slowly petering out. Rumours of a Dutchman in the offing to take over at Old Trafford have buoyed a flat United atmosphere.

Any news of Ten Hag will concern the end of the season. Currently, United, however unlikely, are still in the race to finish in the top four. Any hope of playing Champions League finish will drift further away with anything but a win against relegation-threatened Everton at Goodison Park.

How do Manchester United look?

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In Cristiano Ronaldo’s absence last weekend, United put together an awful performance in a 1-1 draw vs Leicester City. United are yet to secure a win without the five-time Ballon d’Or winner in the starting lineup, so Ralf Rangnick will be enthused to hear of his return for the trip to Merseyside.

Despite Ronaldo’s return potentially bolstering the squad, Rangnick confirmed two of United’s back four in the last game will miss the Everton game. Luke Shaw and Raphael Varane’s injuries mean they are unavailable this weekend. Shaw, who was withdrawn at halftime vs Leicester has had bolts from his leg removed from his leg break in 2015, sidelining the Englishman for a number of weeks.

Scott Mctominay will also miss the game due to a foot injury. Edinson Cavani is still not in contention due to a calf problem.

Opposition: Everton

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Another week, another side that looks to be on its knees but can still claim some success against United.

A lot has changed since United gave up a lead to draw 1-1 vs Everton. The two sides will go into the game with different managers and differing ambitions. For the Toffees, their season has gone from bad to worse and they now stare down the barrel of a very real prospect of relegation.

Despite Frank Lampard being introduced, the Merseyside blues are still yet to enjoy an upturn in form and find themselves at a point’s distance from the relegation zone.

Dyche’s damning assessment of Everton made back page news as he told his players that Lampard’s side “don’t know how to win” as Burnley came back to beat Everton in midweek.

Seamus Coleman will likely return to the Everton squad after missing their loss to Burnley. Ex-Manchester City utility man is also back in contention for the Toffees. Donny van de Beek will be unavailable due to loan regulations.

Key stats

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Everton have won just one of their last 13 games vs United. Their last victory came in April 2019 when the Toffees beat the Reds 4-0.

Bruno Fernandes has been involved in six goals in his last four league appearances vs Everton, scoring four and assisting twice.

Prediction

The quintessential Derby of disappointment, especially when you take into consideration what will be happening in the other Manchester/Merseyside fixture on the same weekend. United don’t seem like taking games by the scruff of the neck and Everton look beatable, whoever they take on.

But Everton are too woeful to comprehend anything other than a United victory…

Everton 1-3 Manchester United.

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