Manchester Utd V Newcastle
On Saturday the 11th of September all eyes will be fixed on Old Trafford at 3pm when Newcastle United are the visitors to Manchester in a game that has been overshadowed by the sensational return of Cristiano Ronaldo.
Newcastle go to Manchester off the back of 1 win in 5 games in all competitions, their most recent result in the Premier League being a 2-2 draw with Southampton at St James Park courtesy of a last minute penalty for Southampton from James Ward Prowse which meant the points were shared in the North East.
However Man Utd on the other hand come into the game full of confidence not just because of the arrival of Ronaldo which would give any dressing room a lift but because of their unbeaten start to the season consisting of 2 wins and a draw, their first win of the season come at home to Leeds United in which Manchester United were winners by 5 goals to 1 and the opening day victory was then followed up by a lacklustre performance on the south coast away to Southampton resulting in a 1-1 draw where many pundits and fans feel like they were lucky to come away with a point but then the following week and before the International break, United got back to winning ways with a 1-0 win away from home at Wolves with the forever impressive Mason Greenwood grabbing his 3rd goal of the season in as many games but somehow he was overlooked for the recent England internationals.
Both sides will go into the game believing they can get a result but Newcastle’s record going to Old Trafford isn’t one that will fill the Geordies with much confidence as they have only managed 1 win in their last 7 visits to Old Trafford and that victory was almost 8 years ago back in December of 2013. On that day Yohan Cabaye got the only goal of the game in the 61st minute meaning Newcaslte left Old Trafford with all 3 points. In the last 2 meetings between the 2 sides at Old Trafford Man United have scored a combined total of 7 goals compared to Newcastles 2, these resulted in 4-1 and 3-1 victories for Manchester United. With a capacity crowd expected at Old Trafford to witness the 2nd debut of Cristiano Ronaldo this could be a benefit for the United players as seen against Leeds United on the opening day of the season, when Rapheal Varane got announced to the fans on the pitch minutes before the sides took to the pitch for the kick off, when the crowd get behind the players and create that unique atmosphere at Old Trafford it can be a tough place for any side in world football to try get a result and on Saturday it is expected it will be no different when Steve Bruce’s men come to town.
However both sides may face difficulties with selecting their strongest possible side due to the amount of injuries both sides are faced with. For Manchester United Marcus Rashford remains sidelined after shoulder surgery and Jadon Sancho is also unlikely to be fit after withdrawing himself from Gareth Southgates England squad and returning to Manchester with a knock meaning he couldn’t train or play so therefore Manchester United options in the wide areas are significantly weakened with the 2 English men doubtful and not forgetting the departure of Dan James to Leeds on deadline day, it further weakens United’s options in the attacking wide positions. This could mean that those at Old Trafford could see both Mason Greenwood and Anthony Martial either side of Ronaldo who is expected to lead the line for the Red Devils. It doesn’t end there for Man Utd, injuries and other complications could mean that both Fred and Scott Mctominay could be absent from the United side meaning a change would be needed in the number 6 position in front of the back 4, this could open the door and create an opportunity for Donny Van De Beek to finally show both the fans and the manager what he has to offer in a United shirt.
Newcastle also face selection issues themselves whilst trying to ruin the Ronaldo party on Saturday. Callum Wilson who was forced off against Southampton with a thigh injury after scoring his 14th goal for the magpies is a doubt, this is a huge blow for Steve Bruce as Wilson is often to go to man when it comes to goals for Newcastle and without him it is difficult to see where and how Newcastle will cause Man Utd problems. Newcastle also remain without both Martin Dubravka (Broken metatarsal) and Karl Darlow (Recovering from Covid) resulting in Bruce to put his trust into Freddie Woodman who last season missed out on promotion while on loan at Swansea losing to Brentford in the play off final at Wembley. As well as Wilson Dubravka and Darlow Newcastle could also be without Ryan Fraser who like Sancho withdrew from his international duties due to picking up what has been called a ‘knock’. Fraser has been spotted and photographed leaving the scotland camp wearing a protective boot and using crutches so as a result this would all but rule him out of the trip to Manchestrer. The task for Newcastle looked difficult enough without having to face the injury problems that they are faced with for this weekends fixture.
With both sides expected to be forced into changes it is difficult to see anything but a Manchester United win and with the imminent return of CR7 to the English game it is for sure going to be one of most looked out and talked about games of the weekend. Could Steve Bruce take his men to the side in which he was captain of and spoil the party and pull off a shock? Or will Manchester United’s quality be too much for the magpies to handle?
If you are looking for some value bets for this fixture and want to make a few quid look no further. There are several eye catching bets with numerous bookmakers but for us the pick of the lot has got to be Cristiano Ronaldo to score first at 2/1 with Skybet. You would not bet against the man turning up and putting himself in the headlines in his first game back at Old Trafford but if you don’t fancy Ronaldo to score first no problem. Skybet are also offering 5/1 for Mason Greenwood to be the first to score in the game and with the form the young man is in, scoring in all 3 premier league games so far this season, this had to catch the eye. If you fancy Newcastle to score first and silence the Manchester crowd with the absence of Wilson looking all but confirmed it would be hard to look past Alan Saint Maximin, 888sport are offering a huge 14/1 for Saint Maximin to score first and with his trickery, pace and direct running, 14/1 seems a little to big.
Here’s our betting tips for the game;