Manchester United received a shocking reality check in mid-week, losing their Champions League opener against BSC Young Boys! They now aim to bounce back by continuing their good form in the Premier League & make a statement against a menacing West Ham United side.
David Moyes’ team are unbeaten so far this season & has proven to be a force to be reckoned with. It’s safe to say that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side must play a more compelling attacking style to blow away the Hammers and maintain their near-perfect start to the PL season.
West Ham United Likely XI
Fabianski, Coufal, Zouma, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Rice, Soucek, Fornals, Benrahma, Bowen, Yarmolenko
Winston Reid is the only West Ham player injured. However, star striker Michail Antonio will miss this one due to suspension.
Manchester United Likely XI
De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Maguire, Shaw, Matic, Pogba, Greenwood, Bruno, Sancho, Ronaldo
Edinson Cavani, Marcus Rashford & Alex Telles are unavailable because of fitness issues. Scott McTominay & Dean Henderson probably won’t be ready to feature either.
West Ham United vs Manchester United Preview
Manchester United will hope that they’ve hit rock bottom this season with the awful loss to BSC Young Boys. Solskjaer cannot repeat instances like those if he wants real success this season.
He’ll have a big job ahead to get his troops motivated & ready for the challenging test at the weekend. If the Red Devils are even half as bad against West Ham as they were in mid-week, they’re in for a romping.
Fortunate for OGS, his side’s impressive away run in the PL itself gives them a small advantage before game. Man United are now on a 28-game unbeaten away run in the PL, having last lost in January 2020! To keep that record intact, they must be decisive on both ends of the pitch against West Ham.
Cristiano Ronaldo already has 3 goals in 2 appearances. As long as the delivery is spot on inside the box, CR7 should continue his goal-scoring heroics against West Ham – a team he’s scored 5 goals against in 7 past meetings.
Bruno Fernandes & Paul Pogba should continue being United’s creative beacon. Fernandes is starting to find his groove after CR7’s arrival and hopes to continue feeding him with inch-perfect passes into the area to notch up more assists.
Bruno should also be determined to get among the goals himself, getting into key areas in the final third to take wicked shots on goal – while also helping dictate his side’s attacking moves.
Pogba aims to keep notching up more assists after getting 7 in 4 PL games. The Frenchman should play in his more natural midfield role against the Hammers & aims to use his vision to open up areas for his teammates & help create big chances.
Mason Greenwood should start this one after sitting out the Young Boys horror show. He’ll not only look to improve his final delivery, but also get into promising areas in the final third in order to take his vicious shots on goal & terrorize Lukas Fabianski.
Jadon Sancho is slowly integrating into United’s system, but he has to improve his final product in order to finally get a goal contribution against the Hammers. While Man United looks to take the fight to the Hammers, they have to be wary of the attacking threat their opposition possesses.
The Red Devils will be a bit nervous after their recent loss & West Ham are going to look to capitalize on that. Even without their clinical finisher Antonio, David Moyes’ side has enough firepower to torment the Red Devils.
Said Benrahma is a real firecracker in the attack, with his clever movement & clutch final product acting as the fuel to West Ham’s attacking power this season. Pablo Fornals also possess impressive crossing ability & can create big chances from open play & set pieces.
Jarrod Bowen’s dribbling ability & finishing skills make him a torment to play against, while Andriy Yarmolenko can score stunning goals if given too much room. West Ham are fast & direct with their attacking style & can run Man United ragged if given too much space.
The Red Devils have to be extremely resilient defensively to get a positive result from this. Harry Maguire & Raphael Varane are slowly starting to become a solid unit, but this will be their biggest test so far.
The defensive duo has to get be spot on with their clearances & clutch challenges if they’re to bully West Ham’s attackers. Aaron Wan-Bissaka must maintain utmost concentration to nullify the opposition’s attacking threat, while he also must improve his crossing ability.
Luke Shaw has to be defensively tighter & make better challenges to stop crosses from coming in, while he’ll also look to march forward & send in quality crosses to create chances. David de Gea is guaranteed to be tested throughout this game & must tap into his Superman persona to keep a clean sheet.
The Red Devils are in for their biggest challenge yet this season against West Ham. If they want to continue their mini-winning run, OGS’ side must be braver & more creative in the attack & defensively disciplined in order to redeem themselves after the humiliating loss to Young Boys.
I don’t see either team ending each other’s unbeaten streaks in this one. I’ll predict an entertaining 2-2 draw.