Erik ten Hag explains team selection vs Leeds United

Manchester United are getting ready to face Leeds United at Old Trafford, with another 90-minute affair between the two sides scheduled for later this week.

Wednesday’s game at Old Trafford was originally planned for September but the tragic passing of Queen Elizabeth meant the game had to be postponed.

United are in great form going into the game, with Erik ten Hag’s men currently on a 13-game winning run at Old Trafford and the Dutchman will be desperate to extend that run against their bitter rivals.

Leeds, on the other hand, are enduring a miserable period in their season and have recently sacked head coach Jesse Marsch, with former United coach Chris Armas among the figures leading the Yorkshire side out at Old Trafford.

Ten Hag was forced into a number of changes from the side that beat Crystal Palace at the weekend, with Diogo Dalot replacing Aaron Wan-Bissaka. Casemiro is serving the first game of a three-match suspension and that means Marcel Sabitzer starts in Red for the first time.

Further up the pitch, Antony is unavailable and is replaced by Alejandro Garnacho, with Marcus Rashford presumably playing on the right-hand side. Speaking ahead of the game, Ten Hag explained some of the thinking behind his selections

After confirming that Wan-Bissaka misses out due to illness, the boss insisted that Dalot is ready for a return after an injury-plagued two months.

“After his [Dalot] return from the World Cup he struggled, but he also played some games, then he had a setback, but now he’s ready. In the last couple of days, he was in full team training, so he’s ready to start,” he told MUTV, via the Manchester Evening News.

“He [Sabitzer] is experienced, he understands football, he understands the way we want to play, so let’s give him the opportunity and I’m confident that we have a good midfield and good team today. This is also an opportunity [Garnacho].

“I’ve been really happy with him from the bench and I think we are doing this quite well this season, many players coming from the bench and Garnacho is probably the best example, he has such an impact, but he also wants to be a starter. He wants to play every minute and this is a good opportunity.”

Victory over Leeds would put United level on points with second-placed Manchester City and six points clear of fifth-placed Tottenham Hotspur.

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