It has been an abnormal year for the sports world, with the pandemic wreaking havoc to the regular calendar. Football leagues across Europe have experienced a shortened pre-season and fatigued players.
Manchester United have suffered a mixed start to this unique season as a result. Two comfortable wins in the Cup were accompanied with two poor losses at home and a lucky win away in the Premier League that has United sitting 16th in the table.
The international break would have been a friendly sight for those concerned at Old Trafford, giving the players and manager a necessary respite to regroup and refocus.
But Manchester United will have to be ready to compete from the get-go as they face a tough visit to Tyneside. The Magpies have started the season well and always compete hard at home.
With the transfer window closed, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer knows the footballers he has to play with. This is the eleven he should choose to get the Red Devils back to winning ways.
De Gea has always enjoyed undisputed status as Manchester United's No.1, but with his mistakes becoming more frequent and Dean Henderson back from loan, there is a real threat to his spot in the team.
Solskjaer has repeatedly thrown his support behind the Spanish shot-stopper and should continue that at the weekend despite the goals his team has allowed till now.
De Gea had a mixed outing with Spain keeping a clean sheet against Switzerland but being at fault for Ukraine's winner in the next match.
He will be looking forward to an error-free weekend and will be hoping that his defence can help him repay the manager's faith with a solid performance and a first clean sheet in the league.