It will be a clash of two top teams in the Premier League on Sunday, as Arsenal face off against Manchester United at Old Trafford. Arsene Wenger’s side will go into the game at the back of a 2-0 loss to Barcelona at the Emirates, while the Red Devils will go into the game after a 5-1 thrashing of FC Midtjylland. Both sides have been good at times this season, though they have lacked consistency. It will be a must win game for the Gunners, if they still wish to remain in the title race. Louis van Gaal’s side will not be easy to beat at home considering the fierce rivalry between the two sides.
In their previous meeting at the Emirates, Arsenal beat United 3-0 and it could be a similar story with all the injury problems that the club are currently facing. It will be interesting to see what combination the two managers employ in this match to secure all three points on the night.
Here is how the two teams should probably lineup for this crucial tie:
Manchester United: 4-2-3-1
De Gea; Varela, Smalling, Blind, Riley; Carrick, Schneiderlin, Lingard, Mata, Depay; Martial.
Cech; Bellerin, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal; Coquelin, Ramsey, Campbell, Ozil, Sanchez; Giroud.
A battle not just between the players between Petr Cech on one side and David de Gea on the other, though the latter might not be fully fit and will be risked anyway for this crucial tie. The keepers could make the difference to the end result, as both the goalies are still right there at the top and are definitely game changers.
Either side will employ a 4 man defence. For United, the problem will the long list of injuries to their squad. Chris Smalling will be possibly expected to return to the side and it will be Riley once again at left-back, Varela at the right, with Blind and Smalling at the center.
Further, Arsenal will employ Koscielny and Mertesacker at the heart of their defensive line, with Monreal and Bellerin on the left and right side respectively. The back-line looked good against Barca’s attack and it will be interesting to see whether they can keep the likes of Depay and Martial quiet or not.
For the home side, it will be Carrick and Schneiderlin protecting the defence once again. The duo will start in the holding midfield role with the trio of Lingard, Mata and Depay in front of them. The Dutchman was superb on the wings in the Europa League fixture and will be expected to perform at the top level once again.
For the Gunners, it will be Coquelin and Ramsey back to their holding midfield roles with the trio of Campbell, Sanchez and Ozil in front of them. Campbell was dropped for Alex Oxlade Chamberlain in the last game, who eventually got injured and will be out for a few weeks. It will be interesting to see whether the Costa Rican international can link up well with his team-mates or not.
Anthony Martial should return to the team after picking up an injury in pre-match training before the game against FC Midtjylland. If he does indeed, he will start else Rashford will surely be an option.
Wenger on the other hand will use Giroud once again as the lone striker up front, though former United man Danny Welbeck will also be an option if needed.
But at the 2015 World Cup, Bashir had switched his prayer for India after Pakistan knocked out of the tournament. He was praying that Dhoni’s men could retain the title.
The 63-year-old, who was replaced ‘Chacha Cricket’ as the ‘mascot’ for the Pakistani team, in the past, had stated that Dhoni’s humility has won many fans in Pakistan. At 2014 World T20, Bashir could not get any tickets for any of the matches, so Dhoni managed a complimentary ticket of the final for me.
Before the Asia Cup match between two arch nemisis, he didn’t support only his birth place but also wished India’s didn’t lose as well. “Every year I ask my tailor to provide me a new dress for a cricket tour, this time, my dress is half Pakistani and half Hindustani and the same will be worn during the match,” he added. Pa