Newcastle United vs Manchester United preview and prediction | Premier League 2019/20
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is running out of time to implement his rebuilding project at Old Trafford. The Norwegian had warned that it would take time to get United back to the glory days, but even he will be baffled with his team’s recent misfortunes.
The Red Devils have huffed and puffed even against far lesser oppositions and their lack of ideas in the final third has been a worrying sign. To make matters worse, Solskjaer has been extremely unlucky with injuries as they travel to St. James' Park to face Newcastle United in the Premier League after a 1-1 home draw with Arsenal on Monday in the League.
The Norwegian started the new season with a swashbuckling 4-0 win over Chelsea. However, Solskjaer soon lost quite a few members of his first team to injuries. Luke Shaw and Anthony Martial, arguably two of his most important players, remain sidelined, while Paul Pogba is also a doubt for the trip to St. James Park with an aggravated ankle injury.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka has also missed the last two games due to tonsillitis and his involvement in the weekend cannot be confirmed yet. Other confirmed absentees include Jesse Lingard, Eric Bailly, and Phil Jones.
In dire straits
Their opponents on Sunday are in a bit of a mess themselves. Newcastle United are currently 19th in the Premier League table and have managed just a solitary win so far this season in the league. The Magpies are coming into the game on the back of a crushing 5-0 defeat at the hands of Leicester City. They are already out of the Carabao Cup.
The fact that Newcastle has managed to score just four goals will give United a lot of hopes. The Red Devils have struggled to hold on to clean sheets this term, even though their defense has seen improvements after the arrival of Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka. However, Solskjaer’s biggest concern will be United’s inability to create chances as well as score goals. Alarmingly, the Red Devils failed to muster a single shot on target in the midweek tie against AZ Alkmaar.
The injuries to key players will be a cause of concern, but Solskjaer will be aware that there cannot be any more excuses now. Manchester United has to collect all three points at St. James' Park, even though the Norwegian has failed to win an away game since March. However, that record could come to an end on Sunday, abet after a closely contested encounter.
Predicted Final Score: Newcastle United 0-1 Manchester UnitedModified 21 Dec 2019, 00:40 IST