Will Rangnick’s first EPL game as Manchester United boss end in triumph or disaster? Can Crystal Palace bounce back from defeat at Leeds?
Manchester United’s new German boss, Ralf Rangnick, will take charge for the first time on Sunday afternoon, as the Red Devils play host to Crystal Palace in the English Premier League (EPL).
The home side enter the contest off the back of a 3-2 home win over Arsenal on Thursday, which lifted them to 7th in the EPL table.
Meanwhile, Palace suffered a 1-0 defeat away to Leeds United on Tuesday, which saw them remain in 11th place, with 16 points.
Manchester United will again be missing Raphaël Varane and Paul Pogba through injury, while Edinson Cavani and Luke Shaw remain doubtful.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka missed the match against Arsenal with a hand injury; he could come back into contention for this encounter but may have to stand aside for Diogo Dalot, who was impressive against the Gunners.
It wouldn’t be surprising to see the same XI, that started on Thursday, on Sunday, as Rangnick looks more likely to rotate his squad for his midweek clash against Young Boys in the UEFA Champions League.
Cristiano Ronaldo was taken off late in the clash with Arsenal, but the change was only a precaution, and the Portuguese forward is again expected to play as the attacking focal point.
As for Palace, assistant manager, Osian Roberts, said during Friday’s press conference that Joachim Andersen’s hamstring problem is responding well to treatment. The Danish defender could be available for selection here.
Nathan Ferguson and James McArthur remain absent through injury, though, while Joel Ward sits this one out through suspension, so James Tomkins could move to right-back.
Christian Benteke and Luka Milivojević both started from the bench against Leeds, but both are pushing for a return, while Wilfried Zaha should lead the attacking line against his former employers.
Our prediction for this clash is 3-1 to the Red Devils, with the home side netting in both halves.
Manchester United possible starting XI:
De Gea; Dalot, Lindelöf, Maguire, Telles; McTominay, Fred; Sancho, Fernandes, Rashford; Ronaldo
Crystal Palace possible starting XI:
Guaita; Tomkins, Andersen, Guéhi, Mitchell; Gallagher, Milivojević, Kouyaté; Ayew, Benteke, Zaha