With Manchester United still in four competitions, their fixture list is beginning to pile up again. The EFL Cup final against Southampton is on the horizon, but first, the Red Devils have to face a Saint-Etienne side that comes to England on the back of a 4-0 victory against relegation-threatened Lorient.
The match, that United fans will be expecting their side to win, features an interesting battle between Paul Pogba and his brother, Florentin Pogba. The Saint-Etienne man plays as a centre-back but had to operate at left-back during their victory against Lorient.
Another interesting sub-plot to this fixture surrounds Anthony Martial. If the Frenchman was to score, it will cost United £8.5 million, due to a clause in his contract that entitles Monaco to a payment from the Red Devils.
It’s well observed that United haven’t lost a Premier League game since the end of October, but in Europe, the Reds have not been as impressive. United struggled past Zorya at home and lost to Fenerbahce and Feyenoord on their travels. This saw Jose Mourinho’s side finish second in their group.
Saint-Etienne have also been in good form recently having only lost two of their last six games. The French side beat local rivals Lyon 2-0 to claim the bragging rights. The Greens have also scored 11 goals in their last six fixtures.
Predicted Manchester United starting XI Predicted Saint-Etienne starting XI
Suspensions and injuries:
Jose Mourinho has said Wayne Rooney, Michael Carrick, and Phil Jones will not play in Manchester United’s Europa League clash with St Etienne on Thursday. Jones has been absent since going off in the Premier League match with Hull due to a foot complaint, while Rooney and Carrick were on the bench against Watford.
Cheikh M’Bengue, Oussama Tannane, and Alexander Soderlund are missing for Saint-Etienne as they look to continue their unbeaten streak in the Europa League, which began in their first group game of the season.
With United in such impressive form and finally looking like they understand what Jose Mourinho wants, the Red Devils are strong favourites for this tie. Saint Etienne have been scoring frequently recently but haven’t had to face anyone of the stature of Manchester United’s David de Gea.
Manchester United 3-0 Saint-Etienne.
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