Arsenal undoubtedly have the momentum, high spirits and options available to hurt Manchester United at Old Trafford on Wednesday afternoon, as a congested fixture list begins to take its toll on Jose Mourinho’s squad. Niggling injury complaints and long-term absences will not help the cause of a side who have struggled to strike up any semblance of good form in recent weeks.
The away side will be flying high after an emphatic 4-2 win over Tottenham in the North London derby on Saturday. Unai Emery has his side looking direct and dangerous and can call upon the in-form likes of Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Man United, meanwhile, are winless in their last three Premier League outings and in need of a much-improved performance to stop the rot.
Here’s all you need to know ahead of the Premier League’s midweek action:
Kick off: Wednesday 5th December, 8pm at Old Trafford
TV channel: BT Sport 1 and BT Sport 4K UHD, available to stream on the BT Sport app
Referee: Andre Marriner
Form: Manchester United WLDWD, Arsenal DDWWW
Odds: Manchester United 36/25, Draw 21/10, Arsenal 13/5
Team news and expected line-ups
Luke Shaw is a doubt for midweek action, after being substituted after picking up a knock against Southampton on Saturday evening. Ashley Young would have been asked to switch to left back in the event of the England international being unavailable for action, but the experienced utility man is suspended for Wednesday’s action.
Read more: Jose Mourinho’s rant at Paul Pogba: What was said in dressing room and will midfielder play vs Arsenal?
Antonio Valencia and Matteo Darmian are also both slight doubts due to injury, which could put Diogo Dalot in contention to play some part at full back or see Mourinho tweak his system slightly. Marcus Rashford asked to be withdrawn against Southampton at the weekend, but is expected to be fully fit to feature against Arsenal. Eric Bailly has a minor back complaint, while Chris Smalling is carrying a minor foot problem.
Victor Lindelof is sidelined for a fortnight or so as he recovers from a hamstring injury, while Alexis Sanchez faces an indefinite spell on the sidelines with his own hamstring complaint. The Chilean isn’t expected to feature for Man United again in 2018. Mourinho has plenty to think about and could deploy a five-man defence once more.
Read more: How could Arsenal line up against Man Utd – and should Unai Emery stick with a back three?
Arsenal are missing Nacho Monreal and Konstantinos Mavropanos due to a hamstring problem and a groin injury respectively, while Danny Welbeck faces a long spell on the sidelines after a recent operation on his right ankle. Mesut Ozil missed the North London derby with a back spasm, with coach Unai Emery not giving much away regarding the German playmaker’s absence from the Gunners’ 4-2 victory.
Granit Xhaka is missing due to suspension for the away side, after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season against Spurs. Emery will likely introduce young midfielder Matteo Guendouzi alongside Lucas Torreira in his place. Aaron Ramsey could be a more adventurous option for the Spaniard to go with, and could replace Alex Iwobi in the starting line-up after picking up two second-half assists last time out. Shkodran Mustafi has a knock, but should be in contention.
Man United expected line-up: De Gea; Dalot, McTominay, Jones, Matic, Shaw; Herrera, Pogba, Fellaini; Lukaku, Martial
Arsenal expected line-up: Leno; Mustafi, Sokratis, Holding; Bellerin, Torreira, Guendouzi, Kolasinac; Ramsey, Aubameyang, Lacazette.
More on Premier League
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