Manchester United have struggled to score goals in recent weeks, which is quite contrary to how they started the season. In October, they only scored seven goals in seven games in all competitions. Their lack of goals have seen them drop eight points behind Manchester City, who are now odds on to win the Premier League title this season.
Jose Mourinho and his players will certainly know a home game against Newcastle United on Saturday gives them the chance to put up a good show, both in terms of performance and goals. They simply need to rediscover their goalscoring form again.
With the likes of Paul Pogba, Michael Carrick, Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo likely to miss the match due to injury, below is how we expect United to lineup for the Newcastle United clash.
Mourinho is likely to go with four defenders, hence we expect a centre-back pairing of Chris Smalling and Eric Bailly, while in the right-back position will be the ever-reliable Antonio Valencia. We expect Ashley Young to be the starting left-back.
In midfield is where it gets interesting. Mourinho certainly likes Marouane Fellaini and we believe he will start the big Belgian alongside Nemanja Matic, who has been one of United’s better players so far this season. It will be interesting to see whether Mourinho will drop Fellaini or Henrikh Mkhitaryan when Paul Pogba returns.
We expect the number 10 role for the clash against Newcastle to be occupied by Henrikh Mkhitaryan, who United will need to put up a good performance if they want to win the match, as his drop in form in recent weeks has led to a drop in form for Manchester United as well.
If Mkhitaryan can rediscover his early season form, that could also lead to Romelu Lukaku picking up form, which is really what Manchester United need. Normally you would expect Mourinho to drop Mkhitaryan and play Mata in that number 10 role, but we think this is very unlikely.
Jesse Lingard, Anthony Martial and Romelu Lukaku should complete United’s team for this clash as the attacking trio.