Despite the odds stacked against them, Manchester United claimed a vital 2-1 victory over bitter rivals Arsenal last time out and the three points on the day meant that the Red Devils currently find themselves in the dizzying heights of fourth place.
Although the result was certainly a big boost, it has to be said that United did get lucky on a couple of occasions throughout the game and things would have been so different if Arsenal had converted their opportunities early on.
United now prepare to welcome struggling Hull City to Old Trafford on Saturday and while the victory will be important, the Red Devils’ faithful will be hopeful that their team can put in a much improved performance as well.
Here is the Strongest Possible Lineup for Manchester United on the day –
De Gea was in fine form against Arsenal as well
David De Gea reiterated his importance to Manchester United by putting in another fine performance against Arsenal last week. The Spaniard was simply imperious and although the saves that he made were not spectacular, his positioning as well as handling was imperious.
Now up against a Hull City side, De Gea will probably not be as busy as he had been against Arsenal but he certainly needs to be on his guard as the Tigers do possess a couple of dangerous players in their squad.
Louis van Gaal surprised many with his decision to go with a 3-5-2 formation against Arsenal but having won the game, his selection was most certainly vindicated.
However, United cannot afford to play on the counter at home against a struggling Hull City side and van Gaal will probably look to return to a back four on Saturday. Still without the services of Jonny Evans, Marcos Rojo and Phil Jones as well as the recent blow of losing Luke Shaw, van Gaal is short of options at the back.
McNair did fantastically well last week
Following their fine performance, the duo of Paddy McNair and Chris Smalling will most probably keep their place in the centre back positions, while Tyler Blackett could be shifted into the left back role. That said Ashley Young is also an option as he performed very well against the Gunners.
Antonio Valencia looks set to continue at right back but Rafael is nearing full fitness and should be in contention as well.
In terms of the midfield, Daley Blind and Jesse Lingard remain out with injuries but as a major boost Ander Herrera seems to have returned to full fitness and could make a return to the lineup.
Marouane Fellaini and Michael Carrick have been impressive at the middle of the park for United and should retain their place for the clash against Hull.
Herrera is now back in contention
However, if van Gaal wants to bring in a fresh impetus to his attack Herrera and Juan Mata could also feature. In the wide positions, Angel Di Maria looks set to continue while it will be interesting to see who van Gaal will look to deploy on the opposite flank.
Adnan Januzaj seems the most likely option but Mata and Young can also effectively play out on the wings and the duo will certainly be on van Gaal’s mind when he selects the team for Saturday.
The return of Wayne Rooney has been a huge boost for United and the striker put in a wonderful performance in United’s victory over Arsenal.
While his goal proved to be the winner, Rooney’s overall game was simply admirable and the striker will look to play a huge role against Hull as well.
Rooney will be looking to continue his fine run of form
Now, it will be interesting to see who will play alongside Rooney in attack. Robin van Persie has been very ineffective in recent times and there is a possibility that young James Wilson could be handed a start.
With Radamel Falcao returning to full fitness as well, the Colombian will be pushing for a spot in the starting lineup as well.
Via – Lineup Builder