Manchester United vs Nottingham Forest 2nd Leg Preview

Manchester United host Nottingham Forest as they aim to glide into their first domestic final since 2018. Erik ten Hag’s team will look to secure their place in the Carabao Cup final against Newcastle. Having mounted a big away lead at the City Ground, this should not pose too much of a concern for United. However, anything is possible and so United must act professionally and get the job done. Nottingham Forest know they will need a miracle to win this tie. So their mindset may be to rest players for this game and focus on a crucial match against Leeds. United can afford to rest against Forest but may give some rotational players crucial minutes.

Here’s all you need to know:

Match Information:

Teams: Manchester United and Nottingham Forest
Date: Wednesday 1st February 2023
KO Time: 20:00 GMT
Location: Old Trafford
Managers: Erik ten Hag and Steve Cooper
Referee: Peter Bankes

Manchester United Team News vs Nottingham Forest

Manchester United will be without Christian Eriksen for the next 2-3 months. Eriksen sustained a serious injury following a horrible challenge from Andy Carroll and was seen leaving Old Trafford in crutches. Eriksen will join Donny van de Beek, Scott McTominay and Diogo Dalot on the injury list. This trio of midfield injuries has forced United’s hand and has resulted in an agreement to take Marcel Sabitzer from Bayern Munich on a 6 month loan. Sabitzer will not be available for selection for this match but could make his debut as early as Saturday against Crystal Palace.

Marcel Sabitzer has joined on loan from Bayern Munich. However, he will not be ready to feature yet.

Erik ten Hag will be thoroughly pleased to have Jadon Sancho and Anthony Martial back and available for selection. Ten Hag confirmed the duo would make the squad for the semi-final second leg and could make their returns on the pitch. This game may come too early for Axel Tuanzebe who is a candidate to leave Manchester before the transfer window shuts tonight.

Interesting Facts:

  • Should Manchester United secure their place in the Carabao Cup, it would be their first final since 2021 and their first league cup final since winning it in 2017.
  • Marcus Rashford is the top goalscorer in the Carabao Cup this season with five goals already.
  • Manchester United have lost their last three cup finals in a row (Europa League 2021, FA Cup 2018, European Super Cup 2017). They have never lost four in a row in their history.

Predicted XI:

I expect United will keep David de Gea in goal for this game. Wan-Bissaka is unlikely to be rested for this match but Malacia should keep his place and allow Luke Shaw to rest ahead of the Palace game. Harry Maguire should start this game along with Lisandro Martinez as Varane’s game time can be managed.

In midfield, McTominay is not available and so a Brazilian duo of Casemiro and Fred will likely be the mainstay of the United side for now. Of course, Bruno will start in the 10 role. Out wide, Rashford should be rested for Garnacho while Antony should start on the right. There’s an argument for Pellistri to start this game but I think Antony’s good form should be rewarded. Up front, Weghorst should start too.

Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Martinez, Malacia; Casemiro, Fred; Antony, Fernandes, Garnacho, Weghorst

Predicted Score:

I think United will want no scares and will put this game to bed. A comfortable win, a few goals and a clean sheet. If they can take off key players ahead of a tricky schedule, it will be an added bonus.

United to win 3-0

Author: Arjun Handa

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