Manchester United are gearing up for their first game in the post-Ole Gunnar Solskjaer era, with Michael Carrick set to take charge of the side for the first time since assuming caretaker responsibilities.
Solskjaer was sacked by Manchester United following the 4-1 loss to Watford last weekend, following a dire run of results which left the Reds 8th in the Premier League table.
It remains to be seen whether Solskjaer’s dismissal will spark a reaction from Manchester United but Carrick will be desperate to end United’s rot with a positive performance against Unai Emery’s side.
Considering the only departure from the coaching setup has been Solskjaer, it would be fair to assume that Carrick is unlikely to make wholesale changes and stick with many of the Norwegian’s favourites.
The former Manchester United midfielder will, however, be forced into at least one change. According to the Manchester Evening News, Luke Shaw has been left out of the travelling squad after being forced off the pitch due to injury against Watford.
Alex Telles is likely to replace the 26-year-old. Harry Maguire is available despite his red card at the weekend but Raphael Varane remains on the sidelines.
Paul Pogba is also out, whilst Mason Greenwood missed another game after testing positive for COVID-19. In midfield, Fred is likely to return after sitting out the defeat in London.
Donny van de Beek could be offered a rare start after impressing in his second-half substitution at Vicarage Road. Jadon Sancho was also one of United’s best performers.
Predicted Manchester United XI vs Villarreal (4-2-3-1): De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Telles; Van de Beek, Fred; Sancho, Fernandes, Rashford; Ronaldo