While most of the other Premier League sides return to competitive action this weekend, Manchester United have been given an extended period off because of the club’s involvement in the latter stages of the Europa League.
To help the players prepare for the new season a warm-up match has been arranged which will see Manchester United take on Aston Villa at Villa Park. The friendly will give Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and assistant manager Mike Phelan a better idea of where the players are in terms of match fitness.
Solskjaer won’t want his team playing catch up at the early stages of the coming Premier League season because we fell behind way too soon last term, with Liverpool finishing 33 points clear of ourselves.
That can’t happen again and we need to be sweeping aside the teams we struggled against last season. The arrival of Bruno Fernandes helped us in January and that should be boosted again with Donny van de Beek, the latter we expect to feature against Villa tomorrow.
Without further ado, here’s my predicted XI for United’s warm-up match against Aston Villa: Dean Henderson; Timothy Fosu-Mensah, Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, Luke Shaw; Scott McTominay, Donny van de Beek; Daniel James, Andreas Pereira, Jesse Lingard; Anthony Martial.
The main aim is to give players sufficient minutes on the pitch and to come away with no injuries. Luckily for everyone involved the result takes the backseat.
Solskjaer has already dropped a hint that Shaw will return for the friendly after missing the end of last season with an ankle injury, as per ManUtd.com.
Moreover, the manager told MUTV that Pogba has only returned to training after testing positive for the coronavirus, so we don’t expect him to feature against Villa.