After a rough few weeks for Manchester United, where manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's job was in jeopardy. The past few days have seen the Red Devils beat Jose Mourinho's Spurs and Pep Guardiola's Manchester City and look rejuvenated after a long time. Their latest challenge comes in the form of AZ Alkmaar, who are currently placed 2nd in the Eredivisie.
Both the teams have already secured qualification into the next round of the Europa League, however, what is at stake is the number 1 spot in the group table. A draw or a victory would mean that Manchester United finish first, whereas a win for the Dutch side would see them advance as table toppers.
Manchester United vs AZ Alkmaar Head to Head
These two teams met a few weeks ago in the Netherlands, but with neither team getting an upper hand, the encounter ended with the scoreline of 0-0. This time around, the game will be contested at Old Trafford and Ole will be looking to maintain his teams winning run with a victory over the Dutch team.
However, AZ has been in great form as of late. They are currently undefeated in the last 9 games and have managed to keep a clean sheet in 6 of those, which suggests that the battle may not as easy as it seems for the home team. Manchester United have found form again too, defeating two of England's "big 6" in their last two games, so this definitely indicates towards a mouth-watering contest between two inform teams.
Manchester United form (all competitions): WDLDWW
AZ Alkmaar form (all competitions): WWWDWW
Manchester United vs AZ Alkmaar team news
Manchester United - The manager will hope to have Marcos Rojo back, the defender was out with a thigh injury for a while. The positive news comes from Nemanja Matic, who looks set to make his first appearance for the club in over two months.
Soljskaer has rotated his squad and has favoured the youth in Europa, but some senior players might play given the fact that the first spot in the group is on the line. The likes of Mason Greenwood and Axel Tuanzebe are still expected to start.
AZ Alkmaar - Former Aston Villa defender Ron Vlaar might feature for the team after returning to the squad at the weekend. Jordy Clasie could take the place of Fredrik Midtsjo in midfield, but Myron Boadu will miss the game due to suspension.
Manchester United vs AZ Alkmaar Predicted XI
AZ Alkmaar - Marco Bizot; Jonas Svensson, Stijn Wuytens, Ron Vlaar, Owen Wijndal; Dani De Wit, Jordy Clasie, Teun Koopmeiners; Calvin Stengs, Ferdy Druijf, Oussama Idrissi
Manchester United vs AZ Alkmaar Prediction
Despite Alkmaar's form in the Europa League and their domestic league, it is hard to see Manchester United losing at Old Trafford given the confidence flowing through the club right now. However, due to the absence of certain first-team starters, this game has a very good possibility of ending up as a stalemate.
Verdict - Manchester United 1-1 AZ Alkmaar
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