Real Sociedad will entertain Manchester United at the Old Trafford on Thursday night as the teams look set to resume their UEFA Europa League campaign. The Red Devils will be heading into the second leg with a comfortable 4-0 lead; however, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be aiming to pick up a positive result and secure a spot in the Round of 16. On the other hand, the Ryals will come into the game on the back of an impressive 4-0 win over Alaves last week.
Let’s take a look at how things are shaping up ahead of the midweek clash.
There has been little to no good news on the injury front for the hosts as Scott McTominay, Donny can de Beek, and veteran striker Edinson Cavani have been ruled out of the Thursday-night clash. Paul Pogba remains sidelined with a thigh injury.
“They’ll still be missing.” – Solskjaer revealed.
“They’ve not joined training, so they won’t be ready. No. Paul has been outside on the grass and is starting to step up his recovery, but he’s not near the team for this game.”
“It’ll be more or less the same squad that we had against Newcastle.” – The Norwegian coach added.
The boss further dropped some hint on the involvement of Amad Diallo and Shola Shoretire.
“Amad and Shola will, of course, be involved. They are in the squad, but I am not going to tell you if they are starting or not.”
Flipping over to the visitors, centre-back Robin Le Normand is out through suspension. Adnan Januzaj, who came on as a substitute against Alaves, is expected to start on Thursday.
Talking Tactics And Key Men
Real Sociedad form (all competitions): D-W-W-L-W
Manchester United form (all competitions): D-W-D-W-W
Real Sociedad decided to field a high line in the reverse fixture, as a result of which the United front-men could penetrate their backline with little to no effort. Daniel James’ extraordinary work rate and Marcus Rashford’s pace helped the visitors dominate from start to end despite the absence of some key names.
Solskjaer is expected to set up his side in a similar way for the second-leg. As usual, Bruno Fernandes will be carrying most of his sides’ creative and goal-scoring burdens; however, the absence of Scott McTominay might leave the hosts vulnerable to counter attacks time and again. Harry Maguire and Eric Bailly will have to put up a dominant performance at the back if they wish to pick up a positive result.
Real Sociedad possible starting XI:
Remiro; Gorosabel, Zubeldia, Sagnan, Monreal; Zubimendi, Merino, Silva; Januzaj, Isak, Oyarzabal
Manchester United possible starting XI:
Henderson; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Bailly, Shaw; Fred, Matic; Greenwood, Fernandes, James; Rashford
Manchester United 2-2 Real Sociedad.