Manchester United v Norwich City
Five players will be missing for Manchester United, with Fred the latest absentee because of a hip issue.
Luke Shaw might not play again this season, while Raphael Varane, Scott McTominay and Edinson Cavani are still injured.
Norwich pair Billy Gilmour and Przemyslaw Placheta could return from Covid-19 and injury respectively.
Loanee Brandon Williams is ineligible to face his parent club and this game comes too soon for Josh Sargent.
Norwich are hanging on in there, aren’t they? They have not thrown in the towel yet and showed it with their win over Burnley last weekend.
There has been plenty of talk that Ajax boss Erik ten Hag is about to become Manchester United’s next manager but, for the time being, Ralf Rangnick is still interim boss and it is not working for them.
That arrangement can work – Guus Hiddink showed that when he had four months with Chelsea and won the FA Cup in 2009 – but the Blues had a strong and united dressing room to help to run the team the right way, which United clearly don’t have.
They should still beat Norwich, of course, but too many of their players seem to be thinking ‘does it really matter?’ right now, and that won’t change until the new manager arrives.
- Manchester United have won 21 of the past 25 meetings in all competitions, including each of the last five.
- A 16th Premier League defeat for Norwich in this fixture would represent their worst record in the division against another team.
- Norwich have lost 4-0 in four of their five most recent away games against United. Their only victory in the last 12 trips to Old Trafford was 2-1 in the Premier League in December 2015.
- United have won only three of their past 12 matches in all competitions.
- They are guaranteed to fall short of last season’s final tally of 74 points; the maximum United can achieve is 72.
- The Red Devils have dropped points in five of their seven league games this season against teams currently in the bottom four of the table (W2, D3, L2).
- However, their only defeat in 10 home league fixtures since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was sacked as manager came against Wolves in January (W6, D3).
- Marcus Rashford has gone 15 starts in a row without scoring for United across all competitions.
- Harry Maguire is one short of 200 Premier League appearances. He has played 98 times in the division for Manchester United.
- Norwich have 21 points with seven games remaining. The fewest points a team has had after 31 matches of a Premier League season and avoided relegation is 23 by Fulham in 2007-08.
- The Canaries have lost all 11 league matches this season against the teams currently in the top seven of the table, conceding 37 goals.
- They are one short of 100 Premier League wins.
- Norwich’s two Premier League away victories in 2021-22 came against fellow promoted teams Brentford and Watford.
- They can keep three consecutive top-flight clean sheets for the first time since November 2012.
- Dean Smith is vying to become the first manager to beat Manchester United with different teams in the same Premier League season. His Villa side triumphed 1-0 at Old Trafford in September.
Choose your Manchester United formation and starting line-up. It’s up to you how to approach it – you could go for the team you WANT the boss to pick or the one you THINK he will.
Choose your Norwich formation and starting line-up. It’s up to you how to approach it – you could go for the team you WANT the boss to pick or the one you THINK he will.
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