Manchester United will look to continue their remarkable away form as they take on Sheffield United on Thursday evening. 15 of the 20 points in the league so far has come away from Old Trafford.
This incredible run we are currently on means if we were to win against the Blades, then we would be only the fourth side in top-flight history to secure to win 10 consecutive away league games. In addition, we would become the first team to score two or more goals in 10 successive top-flight away games since Tottenham Hotspur over 60 years ago.
United currently sits in ninth place of the Premier League table. We are just five points off the league leaders, Tottenham Hotspur and with a game in hand over other teams. United have had to do it the hard way in all five away games this season with conceding the first goal before coming back to win.
We are currently unbeaten in 12 games on the road having not lost since January. In fact, no team has ever done so in six away games during an entire Premier League season. Our excellent away form is not reflected in our form at Old Trafford as a mixture of performances have resulted in one win, two draws and three losses in the first five home games.
United come into this game off the back of a 0-0 draw with our rivals and neighbours Manchester City on Saturday. Neither side wanted to risk making a mistake that may have resulted in losing the game. Given other results from the weekend games and with Chelsea and Manchester City dropping points against Wolves and West Brom on Tuesday night, United is in the perfect position to start gathering some momentum.
Sheffield United has endured the worst possible start to their season having failed to win any of their 12 games so far only picking up one point against Fulham back in October. In all the top-flight history of football, Sheffield United is just one of only three clubs to have one point or fewer at this point of the season.
When these sides last met back in June when the Premier League recommences after lockdown, it was a game that pitted each other in the race for the Champions League places. Things have certainly changed on its head for the Blades from their impressive performances last season to now where they are out of form and struggling to score. The gap between Burnley and Fulham means they are eight points away from safety.
Sheffield United’s bad run of form had actually begun before the end of last season and have now won none of their last 15 Premier League games and six of their last seven at Bramall Lane. Whilst their manager Chris Wilder has done a good job at Sheffield United to get them back into the Premier League and stay up as well, if they continue this bad run of form then it is only a matter of time before the club look to part company with him.
Sheffield United vs Manchester United Match Details
Teams: Sheffield United vs Manchester United
Date: December 17th, 2020 (Thursday)
KO Time: 20:00 BST
Competition: Premier League
Stadium: Bramall Lane
Referee: Michael Oliver
Managers: Ole Gunnar Solskjær and Chris Wilder
Manchester United Team News
Edinson Cavani has returned to training as he stepped up his recovery following an injury and is likely not to feature against Sheffield United. Anthony Martial who came on as a substitute during the Manchester City will be pushing for a place back in the starting eleven.
Ole Gunnar Solskjær revealed in the pre-match conference that Marcos Rojo has suffered an injury setback and won’t be available until January along with Phil Jones. He said, “Marcos has just felt a niggle in his calf again. He’s worked really hard to come back, he played a game with the Reserves and got a knock there. Worked really hard again, then felt something. He’s hopefully back in January, Marcos. Phil [Jones] should be ready by January.”
Alex Telles may come back into the starting eleven after sitting out the game against Manchester City at the weekend but it is likely that Ole will not make many changes to the team for Thursday’s game.
Pre-Match Press Conference
During the pre-match press conference, Ole Gunnar Solskjær was asked about Dean Henderson and how much he’s benefited from his two-year loan spell at Sheffield United. He said, “It just shows how beneficial some loan deals are. Of course Dean has worked his way up through the ranks, through the system and the two years at Sheffield United has made him really come back as a more mature, quality keeper.“
Ole was asked why so many teams in the league have been better away from home this season. He said, “I think it goes to show how important the home fans are when you get them back again, how valuable they are. It’s not just a cliche when we say they’re our 12th man and we need their support. Now it’s like I can call Chris up and ask him to come to Carrington and play a friendly game. It’s almost that similar feel to it. Our fans are so, so important for us and I can’t wait to get them back.“
He was asked whether he thinks the season is going to be unusual in terms of results all the way through. He said, “I think it’s also sign of the Premier League, the quality of the so-called lesser teams. There’s no easy game in the Premier League. Then again the top teams the last few seasons have just had a knack of winning tight games instead of drawing them. With the tight schedule and whatever is happening around the world and in peoples’ and players’ lives I think yeah we’ll see this throughout this season.“
Sheffield United Team News
For our opponents Sheffield United, they will be without Jack O’Connell who remains a long-term absentee from the squad. Whilst Oli McBurnie is a major doubt for Thursday’s evening game. The only other concern is Kean Bryan. Chris Wilder may look to change up the squad as he recalls Lys Mousset, Max Lowe, and John Lundstram to the starting eleven.
Manchester United Premier League form: LWWWWD
Manchester United form (all competitions): WWLWLD
Sheffield United Premier League form: LLLLLL
- Bruno Fernandes has either scored or assisted in 11 of his 12 Premier League away appearances.
- A win for United will see us become only the fourth side in top-flight history to win 10 away league games in a row.
- United have scored at least twice in each of their last nine Premier League away games.
- Manchester United put three past Sheffield United in both matches last season. The only time United conceded 3+ goals in the league last season was at Bramall Lane.
- This match will be Harry Maguire’s 50th Premier League match for Manchester United.
De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw; McTominay, Fred; Van De Beek, Fernandes, Rashford, and Martial.
On paper, this should be a win for United but you just never know given our inconsistency this season. Whilst Sheffield United are struggling for form themselves, I can see them giving it their all tomorrow trying to cause us problems and snatch a victory. Our record away from Old Trafford has been excellent. With the depth in our squad, I expect us to continue our remarkable away form with a victory against the Blades.
Sheffield United 0-3 Manchester United