Nottingham Forest vs Manchester United Preview

Manchester United will want to brush off their gutting defeat to Arsenal with a big step into their first final since 2021 if they beat Nottingham Forest. United travel to Nottingham for their first leg of the Carabao Cup semi-finals. With Southampton and Newcastle the other semi-finallists, this puts United as heavy favourites for the Carabao Cup. However, you can expect a fight from the home side who will try and make things difficult as United are winless in two from two late goals.

It will be a tricky away game and the third in a row for United, however, should they navigate their way to a crucial away win, they will be very happy as they move into another four game home run. Here’s all you need to know:

Nottingham Forest vs Manchester United Match Information:

Teams: Nottingham Forest and Manchester United
Date: Wednesday 25th January 2023
KO Time: 20:00 GMT
Location: The City Ground
Managers: Steve Cooper and Erik ten Hag
Referee: Michael Oliver

Team News:

Nottingham Forest

Dean Henderson was denied a chance to play against his parent club regardless of United’s decision as he is out with a thigh injury. Either way, he is cup-tied along with new signing, Chris Wood who has featured in the cup for Newcastle. Awoniyi, Richards and Biancone continue on the injury list along with Cheikhou Kouyate.

Manchester United

Manchester United welcomed Axel Tuanzebe back to training but he is unlikely to feature along with the quartet of Donny van de Beek, Diogo Dalot, Anthony Martial and Jadon Sancho. Jack Butland is available for his debut but it is unlikely whether he, de Gea or Heaton will feature. I would anticipate Butland will make his debut against Reading on Saturday.

Interesting Facts:

  • Marcus Rashford has only drawn a blank once since the World Cup. He scored his first away goal when starting for the first time in two years in the Arsenal game.
  • Manchester United have lost back-to-back Carabao Cup semi-final ties however, both came to Manchester City.
  • Bruno Fernandes has notched four goals and three assists in five semi-final appearances for Manchester United.
  • Manchester United have only kept one clean sheet in a semi-final tie since 2017.

Predicted XI:

I think United go strong with Reading at the weekend. De Gea is likely to start this one and I pray he does not sabotage another cup competition despite his best efforts against Everton. Wan-Bissaka is likely to continue along with Martinez and Shaw. Harry Maguire could come in for this game and give Varane a rest for 10 days. Casemiro comes in I think for McTominay while I expect Fred could add energy in midfield for United. Bruno will definitely start this one while I would expect Antony and Rashford to flank Weghorst.

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

Predicted Score:

I don’t think United should have a problem with this game. However, the mental block that has been there before after a couple of demoralising losses could be in play. I think if United have the right mindset from the get-go to blow Forest away, we could be in for a comfortable home leg next week.

United to win 0-2

Author: Arjun Handa

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