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Match Preview: Manchester United vs Southampton

Manchester United vs Southampton

Manchester United vs Southampton | Old Trafford | Premier League | KO 20:00 13/07/2020 | Sky Sports

With the recent slip ups of both Chelsea and Leicester City, Manchester United’s fate is well and truly in their own hands- win all of their remaining Premier League games and they will finish third, and will see Champions League returning to Old Trafford next season.

The team is oozing with confidence, having not lost since January, a run that has propelled United from being fourteen points behind third, to being the front runners for the spot.

The next challenge on the road to third comes in the form of Southampton, who themselves have seen a resurgence of their own under boss Ralph Hasenhüttl. They look a far cry from the side who embarrassingly lost 9-0 at home to Leicester City in October.

Both teams enter this match in good form, and this will likely prove to be on of The Reds’ toughest opponents during the end of season run in.

How do Manchester United look?

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It almost feels like a ‘copy paste’ job when reporting on injuries for United when writing these previews. As has been the case with all previous post lockdown games, the only two players certain to miss the fixture are English centre half pairing Axel Tuanzebe and Phil Jones. There have been reports suggesting that the latter recently underwent surgery on his knee, but nothing specific has been confirmed by the club as to why they have both been absent.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has named the same starting eleven for the past four matches, and has hinted that he may look to do the same against The Saints, saying “you’ve got players who are in the rhythm and keep on playing well. So, there’s less work on the training ground, obviously, so there’s loads of decisions to be made, but they make it easier by playing well and performing well and looking after themselves. So, if we don’t get too many injuries, there’s no reason to change too much when you’re doing well.”

The boss was then asked about the way the club is playing, and how impressed he has been with recent performances. In reply, Solskjaer said “you play with pace, you play with power, you play with no fear, you take risks and you’ve got the players who have got qualities. That’s just the DNA of the football club. Of course, I’m happy when you score goals and when you don’t concede, but it’s always been built on a strong foundation”.

The words Ole used embody exactly what it means to be part of Manchester United, and show he understands how United should be playing, and that can only put him in good stead to keep progressing the club to the very top.

Opposition: Southampton

After the 9-0 drubbing against Leicester, the Premier League’s biggest ever home defeat, Southampton looked destined for relegation and boss Hasenhüttl was on the verge of the sack.

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Surprisingly, the board stuck with their man and have since reaped the rewards, rising all the way up to twelfth in the table, just six points behind Arsenal, an impressive feat for the season’s early strugglers.

Much of their turn around has been thanks to English centre forward, and ex Liverpool flop, Danny Ings, who has notched up an impressive 19 strikes in league football this season, and is undoubtedly the one to watch for the away side at Old Trafford on Monday night.

The Saints have already beaten Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City since the restart, as well as earing a point away to Everton, so they will be no easy opponents for United, and The Reds need to be wary of the threat they can cause.

Key Stats

As mentioned previously, United’s fate is in their own hands. If they can win all four remaining Premier League games, they will finish third, leapfrogging both Leicester and Chelsea in the table.

Given the fact that United fans were looking at fifth place (due to Manchester City’s potential ban) being their only route into the Champions League before lockdown, it is an impressive fact that they are now able to control their own destiny.


Manchester United 3-1 Southampton. Goals from Anthony Martial (2) and Mason Greenwood.

Match Preview Writer

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