The Monday night FA Cup clash against Preston North End was seen as a potential banana skin tie for Manchester United and unsurprisingly, the match proved to be a tough battle for the out of sorts Red Devils.
Having trailed for majority of the game, only a late revival ensured that United were able to claim a victory on the night and the performance did nothing to prove that Louis van Gaal’s men are playing to their full potential.
United have been fortunate that in the last few matches they have been able to pick up victories without playing well due to the weakness of the opposition but this weekend, the Red Devils will most certainly have to improve as they come up against a tough Swansea City side away from home.
Swansea are flying high in the league at the moment and they will most certainly not fear a clash against United. Therefore, the Red Devils need to bring their A-Game this Saturday in order to avoid another embarrassing setback.
Here is the Strongest Possible Lineup for Manchester United on the day –
David De Gea has been the undisputed number one choice for Manchester United in both league and cup competitions, and he will undoubtedly start once again in goal against Swansea City.
Swansea boast a dangerous attacking lineup consisting of the likes of Bafetimbi Gomis and Gylfi Sigurdsson among others, and the Spaniard will once again have to be on top form to thwart the threat posed by the Swans.
It was a four man defence consisting of Antonio Valencia, Marcos Rojo, Chris Smalling and Luke Shaw which started against Preston on Monday night and it has to be said that the quartet very performed well.
Despite conceding an avoidable goal, the United backline at Deepdale stood firm and it would not be a surprise if van Gaal elects to go with the same lineup this weekend as well – especially with Phil Jones an injury doubt.
The young duo of Paddy McNair and Tyler Blackett are available for van Gaal if he decides to freshen things up a bit but it is likely that an unchanged defensive line will start at the Liberty Stadium.
While the United attack failed to inspire against Preston, the likes of Daley Blind and Marouane Fellaini were solid if unspectacular and van Gaal could be encouraged to give the duo a start once again.
Angel Di Maria is among the first names on the team sheet for United and he will retain his place in the lineup for sure but it remains to be seen if Wayne Rooney is deployed in midfield or if van Gaal decides to go with either one of the Spanish duo in Juan Mata or Ander Herrera.
Herrera was one of the few shining lights for United against Preston and it would not be a surprise if he starts ahead of compatriot Mata this weekend.
Wayne Rooney caused a stir against Preston with allegations of a dive but away from the controversy, the stirker’s performance was decent on the night. Rooney adds more threat to the toothless looking United lineup and he should continue in attack once again.
However, Radamel Falcao was disappointing again and he looks set to be dropped to the bench. With Robin van Persie also struggling with an injury, there is a chance that James Wilson could be handed a chance to shine while van Gaal could elect to go with a five man midfield, with Rooney leading the line on his own while also accommodating Ashley Young into the side in an advanced role.
Via – Lineup Builder