Down The Wings

Manchester United Fan Blog

Match Preview: Watford vs Manchester United

Watford vs Manchester United | Premier League | Vicarage Road | Kick-Off 15:00

Manchester United, who started the international break with huge question marks over the future of their manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, returned to training in midweek, and normal service resumed in their season.

However, a loss at Watford on Saturday afternoon in the Premier League could spell the end for the Norwegian at United, as he is treading on the thinnest of ice, after what has been an atrocious few months for the club.

Rumours of sackings, crisis talks, player unrest and unhappy fans will not simply go away should United win at the weekend, but a defeat would almost certainly put the writing on the wall.

How do Manchester United look?

The Reds have picked up a number of injury issues in recent weeks, with the most notable being that of Paul Pogba.

The Frenchman picked up a muscular issue whilst taking a shot in training for his national team and is expected to be out for up to 10 weeks.

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By the end of this time, Pogba will have less than six months remaining on his United contract and would be free to negotiate a deal with European clubs, meaning he could have agreed a move away before he next kicks a ball for United.

Should he have sorted a future transfer, there is no reason why Solskjaer (or the manager at the time), would select Pogba in any games during the remainder of the season; if a player has agreed to leave, he should no longer be in the plans of the coach, and therefore should not play.

Fellow Frenchman Raphael Varane is expected to still be out, after he picked up an issue in the Champions League prior to the break, however Luke Shaw should be back, after he sat out of England’s matches, as a result of the concussion he picked up against Manchester City.

Edinson Cavani, who has picked up a recurring issue, will also be out, whilst Marcus Rashford and Scott McTominay should both be up for selection.

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Solskjaer has utilised a back three in recent matches but should revert back to a four back against Watford, given the fact that the level of the opposition will mean United will expect to have more of the ball than they did against City and Liverpool, and should not rely on counter attacks as much.

There are rumours that Donny Van de Beek is in strong contention to start, but he has not been afforded too many chances since joining from Ajax, so probably will not be expecting much on Saturday.

Opposition: Watford

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Former Leicester City and Chelsea boss Claudio Ranieri has taken over a struggling Watford side that are in free fall.

They have won just one of their last five Premier League matches (the same as United) and will undoubtedly be one of the teams in the relegation scrap come May.

With that being said, it should be an easy win for United, however they do not seem to come along very often anymore.

Former United shot stopper Ben Foster is expected to start in goal for The Hornets.

Key Stats

Manchester United have lost just two of their last 20 matches against Watford, a run dating back to 1987.

Prediction

Watford 1-2 Manchester United

Match Preview Writer

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