The World Cup is the perfect stage for unknown players to emerge into the limelight…
Manchester United don’t look like title favourites at the moment. Can Jose Mourinho fire up his squad and get a good result against Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham Hotspur?
Date: Monday, August 27
Kick-off time: 21:00 CET
Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester
Manchester United vs Tottenham Hotspur Preview
The Red Devils are coming off a disconcerting 3-2 loss to Brighton Hove & Albion in which Mourinho’s team struggled for fluency and urgency. In general, Manchester United have looked like a below average side in their first two games and are far from the level needed to challenge Manchester City for the title. Much of it is owed to a difficult pre-season, but that doesn’t justify the players’ and the coach’s lack of commitment.
Paul Pogba realizes his team must step up.
“We definitely don’t want to lose two games in a row, so we’re going to have to get ready and play much, much better.
“We’re not here just to play games and be in the Premier League, we are here to win, we are Manchester United, and that’s what we do. We want to win trophies.
“There are lots of games still and we have to stay positive, and by staying positive is how we will fight for a good result against Tottenham.”
The Spurs weren’t at their best in their first two games either but got the all-important W’s on the scoreboard. Kieran Trippier scored a clutch free-kick goal at a time when Tottenham appeared to be losing control versus Fulham.
“They had scored and gained a lot of momentum, but I think my goal threw them a bit. It was a massive goal in terms of the game.”
Losing momentum to a newly-promoted team at home means Pochettino’s squad has a lot of work to do. There were plenty of positives to take from the contest, though, as Lucas Moura scored his first Premier League goal and Harry Kane ended his August goalless streak.
Dating back to March 2015, the home team has won the last eight matches between these two. However, a draw seems to be the most likely outcome this time around.
Manchester United vs Tottenham Hotspur Injury Updates
Alexis Sanchez returned to training and could be in the starting lineup on Monday. Jesse Lingard wasn’t 100% healthy and was left on the bench against Brighton, but should be back in the starting eleven as well. Antonio Valencia and Nemanja Matic are still recovering from their respective injuries.
Fitness is a bigger issue for Tottenham than injuries right now. Son Heung-Min is the only regular starter unavailable, as he’s representing his native South Korea at the Asian Games.