How Manchester United should line up vs Everton in Premier League fixture
Manchester United are back in action when they travel to face Everton in the Premier League fixture on Sunday afternoon.
Erik ten Hag’s side are the most in-form team over the last five matches in the competition, but they know there is no room for complacency against an Everton side looking to bounce back from their recent 10-point deduction.
Everton have won just one of their last eight league meetings with United (D4 L3) and their historic record is even worse. They have lost 39 times to United in the Premier League era (W10 D13) and could become the first side to lose 40 games to a single opponent in the competition’s history.
In terms of early team news, Andre Onana and Luke Shaw will both be in the squad but Rasmus Hojlund remains a doubt.
The significance of Luke Shaw’s absence has been overstated but United are a much better team with him in it and if he has had ample training sessions then he should go straight into the team. Harry Maguire’s midweek performance in Skopje is a reminder United need their best defender (Raphael Varane) on the pitch from the start.
Ten Hag missed an opportunity by overlooking Kobbie Mainoo for the League Cup humbling by Newcastle and, with Christian Eriksen out for another fortnight, Mainoo would be a forward-thinking selection.
United created good chances against Luton, so it is logical to retain the same front four if Hojlund passes his fitness test.
Injuries are again restricting Ten Hag’s options this weekend and with three tough away games in six games he also needs to be mindful of workload for some players on their way back from injuries.
That would mean I would start Shaw on the bench and look to bring him on in the second half, with Reguilon playing at left-back from the start. Varane is a mystery really and it barely seems worth considering him to play at the moment, given he seems to be so out of favour with Ten Hag.
The midfield selection is particularly interesting in an area where Everton can bing a pretty physical approach. Fernandes is a certainty and McTominay is very much in favour at the moment. Mount should start if he’s fit after Ten Hag confirmed an injury scare on Friday, but the physicality of Amrabat would give him the edge on Merseyside for me.
Hojlund remains touch and go and I would leave him on the bench, given the challenges ahead this week and that Martial actually has a strong record against Everton. Rashford and Garnacho can continue on the wings but both need to start scoring more goals.
Ten Hag is limited by what he can do this weekend but if he is fit enough, Shaw has to come back into the starting line up as the only change in defence.
McTominay is not a defensive midfielder but remains their best option in that role, while Mount starts on the basis that there isn’t really anyone else worthy of a start right now.
The same goes for Rashford in attack. He doesn’t deserve to start but will most likely have to, given the shortage of options elsewhere. Hojlund has to start if he is fit, though with Bayern on the horizon, it would be no surprise to see Rashford moved into the middle and Antony on the right instead.