Carabao Cup Final: Manchester United vs Newcastle United Preview

Manchester United’s season could get even better as they take on Newcastle United in the Carabao Cup Final on Sunday. United have risen from the depths of despair following their worst ever Premier League season and two horrific defeats on the opening two fixtures that left them 20th. Since that point, Erik ten Hag and Manchester United have not looked back as they have recorded the most points in the league from Matchday 3 onwards. They are also the only club in Europe still in all competitions as they emphatically beat Barcelona at Old Trafford on Thursday.

Now they have a chance to win the first trophy of the season and United’s first silverware for six years. A lot of these players will be winning their first trophy for the club, for some it is the first in their career! The Carabao Cup Final is a huge game that will propel United into the second half of the season and hopefully boost the players’ momentum, confidence and overall season.

Of course, for Newcastle United, the Carabao Cup Final poses a similar statement. Newcastle have been so impressive this season as they have been defensively excellent and are competing for the Champions League places. A slight drop has seen them be leapfrogged by Spurs but they are still definitely in the running but will be just as desperate for silverware as their Northern opponents. Here’s all you need to know:

Carabao Cup Final Match Information:

Teams: Manchester United and Newcastle United
Date: Sunday 26th February 2023
KO Time: 16:30 GMT
Location: Wembley Stadium
Managers: Erik ten Hag and Eddie Howe
Referee: David Coote

Carabao Cup Final Team News:

Manchester United:

Manchester United will remain without the services of Christian Eriksen and Donny van de Beek through long term injury. Erik ten Hag confirmed that Anthony Martial would not be ready for the final despite returning to individual training. Casemiro’s suspension has thankfully ended and will return to domestic duty for United in the final. Antony made his return to the side against Barcelona and scored the winner. Marcus Rashford came off with a possible injury against Barcelona. Erik ten Hag could not say whether would rule him out of the final or not.

Newcastle United:

The biggest concerns for Newcastle are their suspended goalkeepers. Nick Pope is suspended after a crazy red card against Liverpool. What’s worse for Newcastle is Martin Dubravka is cup-tied after featuring for United earlier in the competition. Thus Loris Karius will be the man between the sticks for Newcastle and making his first appearance since 2021. Anthony Gordon will also be unavailable having played for Everton earlier in the campaign – like Dubravka. Joelinton and Joe Willock have minor issues they’ll hope to recover from before Sunday while Emile Krafth is the only guaranteed absentee due to injury.

Interesting Facts:

  • Manchester United have lost the last three finals in a row (UEFA Super Cup, FA Cup, Europa League) – in all of those games they have conceded first.
  • Newcastle United have not won the last six games against Manchester United (D2 L4). However, the last two games have been draws after 90 minutes.
  • No one else in the Premier League this season has had the ball out of play for longer than Newcastle United.

Manchester United Predicted XI:

I expect David de Gea to continue between the posts with Shaw, Martinez and Varane ahead of him. I think Wan-Bissaka should start this game to deal with the possibility of Saint-Maximin and if not him, Willock making good runs. In midfield, Casemiro will be welcomed back in as I anticipate he will partner Fred in midfield. Sabitzer could come in for this game but I think that as they have never played together yet, this may not be the game to trial it – especially after a fabulous performance by Fred against Barcelona.

Bruno Fernandes will likely captain the side and should play in the middle of the park with Antony out on the right. His pace against Dan Burn will be pivotal I believe. Rashford will likely start on the left with Weghorst up top to press from the beginning and likely be taken off if needed for the depth of Garnacho and/or Jadon Sancho. If Rashford is out/not fit to start, I would expect Sancho to do so in his place.

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

Predicted Score:

After what I watched against Barcelona, United could take on any side and not only give them trouble but win. Many doubted United could not win a game without Rashford scoring but Thursday proved a lot of people wrong. They can do anything they put their mind to as the players are confident and playing well under an equally confident and intelligent manager. He has this team going in the right direction and a trophy would only encapsulate that. Newcastle are not the team they used to be, they are tough, gritty and get results. They have dropped off recently and Liverpool blew them away early on. That option is certainly open to United and they need to take it. However, I can only see this being a tough game but one United rise through and secure the trophy from.

United to win 2-1

Author: Arjun Handa