Only one of last year’s Carabao Cup finalists can enter the pot for the quarter-final draw, as Manchester United entertain Newcastle United in Wednesday’s fourth-round clash at Old Trafford.
Erik ten Hag is under immense pressure as his side sit eight in the Premier League, 11 points off league leaders Tottenham after 10 games. A 3-0 humbling at the hands of cross-town rivals Manchester City on Sunday piled more misery on Ten Hag and he would want to put the forgettable derby day behind him as quickly as possible.
The Red Devils beat Crystal Palace 3-0 last month to cruise into the last 16 but face an uphill test against Newcastle, who ended Man City’s quadruple hopes with a memorable 1-o win at St James’ Park in the last round.
Manchester United Team News
Luke Shaw (muscle), Tyrell Malacia (knee) and Lisandro Martinez (foot) remain out for Man United, but Amad Diallo has stepped up his recovery from a knee problem by starting individual training on the grass at Carrington.
Casemiro (ankle) and Aaron Wan-Bissaka (thigh) should be in for a chance to feature against Newcastle after the duo failed to prove their fitness in time for the Manchester derby.
Predicted Manchester United lineup vs Newcastle (4-3-3)
Ten Hag is yet to hand second-choice goalkeeper Altay Bayindir his Man United debut, persisting with Andre Onana so far. Onana is slowly starting to put behind a difficult start to life at Old Trafford, and after making a string of top saves to keep the scoreline respectable in the Manchester derby, he is set to start in goal again.
Squad rotation is expected, with Ten Hag hoping to keep the players fresh and hungry throughout the month. Changes are expected in defence, where Raphael Varane and Sergio Reguilon could come in for Jonny Evans and Victor Lindelof, respectively, but Harry Maguire and Diogo Dalot’s places are seemingly under no threat.
Given the way Newcastle have been playing of late, the shaky Man United backline could be in for a tough evening at Old Trafford. So, they must defend for their lives to keep a clean sheet.
Sofyan Amrabat should be fresh to start after being withdrawn at half-time in the Manchester derby. But is unclear who might start alongside the Moroccan, although Mason Mount has a strong chance of featuring after coming on as a second-half substitute on Sunday.
With Amrabat acting as the shield for the defence, Mount and Bruno Fernandes’ dynamism, vision and running power could be key in unlocking the rigid Newcastle backline. Christian Eriksen and Scott McTominay should drop to the bench, whereas young Kobbie Mainoo hopes to get some minutes under his belt after returning from injury.
Misfiring Marcus Rashford could make way for Alejandro Garnacho to start on the left, while Antony hopes to bring intensity, energy and creativity from the opposite flank. Rasmus Hojlund, who still awaits his first goal in domestic competitions for the Red Devils, should be tasked with leading the attack again.
Anthony Martial, Facundo Pellistri and Rashford could be involved at some point in the second half of the crunch cup tie.
I am Rohan Sengupta from one of the busiest cities in India, Mumbai. A Journalism graduate with a keen interest in sports, football is something I simply cannot live without and writing, discussing and analyzing the game is what I do 24*7.