Manchester United is set to make a trip to the Hawthorns to face Sam Allardyce led West Brom. The home team is finding it hard to escape out of the relegation zone. They are stuck at the 19th position with 12 points in 23 games. They are just one point above the rock-bottom Sheffield United.
On the other hand, Manchester United have accumulated 45 points in 23 games. They are standing at the 2nd spot, five points behind the table-toppers Manchester City. A win at the Hawthorns will take them to 48 points having played two games more than Manchester City.
West Brom hierarchy decided to sack Slaven Bilic and appointed Sam Allardyce hoping that the veteran manager can change their fortunes. But, it seems like even he is powerless with the squad he has at his disposal right now.
The recent upturn in Sheffield United’s form has put West Brom under more pressure to win games. With every loss from here on, West Brom will move closer to the Championship.
If Manchester United wants to mount a title challenge this year, they have to win this game for sure. Manchester City can potentially have an eight-point lead if they win their game in hand. As fifth-placed Chelsea are looking dominant under Thomas Tuchel, we have to sit tight to see who finishes in the top four. This can be the season of margins!
When and Where?
West Brom will host Manchester United at the Hawthorns in the Premier League fixture on 14th February (07:30 PM IST).
Team News and Expected Line-up
Winger Grady Diangana is a doubt for this clash due to a hamstring injury. He last played his last game on 2nd January against Arsenal. New loan signing Okay Yokuslu from Celta Vigo can make his debut.
Expected Line-up: Sam Johnstone; O’Shea, Ajayi, Bartley, Conor Townsend; Sawyers, Ainsley Maitland-Niles; Snodgrass, Gallagher, Grant; Diagne.
Paul Pogba remains out after picking up a thigh injury against Everton after the half-hour mark. Donny Van De Beek should get his chance to start the game at his position. Eric Bailly has returned to training. He last featured in 2-1 win at Fulham in January 2021. Phil Jones is still out due to long-term injuries.
Expected Line-up: David De Gea; Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw; Nemanja Matic, Donny Van De Beek, Bruno Fernandes; Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood, Edinson Cavani
Head to Head stats: West Brom vs Manchester United
West Brom has lost nine, drawn two, and won only once in the last 12 Premier League games against Manchester United. In the same time frame, they have conceded 31 goals. In the reverse fixture earlier this season, Bruno Fernandes’ penalty goal was the only difference as the Red Devils took all three points.
Edinson Cavani – Manchester United
Edinson Cavani is in fine form for the Red Devils. Against a team like West Brom, he will find it difficult to find space in between. But with his wealth of experience, he should be able to help his team earn the three vital points.
Sam Johnstone – West Brom
The home team’s goalkeeper has to do plenty of work against Manchester United. If he can maintain a clean sheet, he will make sure the West Brom has better chances to head home with at least one point.
The 12TH Man Prediction: West Brom 1-3 Manchester United
We don’t see Manchester United maintaining a clean sheet away from home. Though, their star-studded lineup tells us that they should score a few goals to register another away win. It will be interesting to see how Solskjaer plans to break West Brom’s deep defence line. As of now, we go with a Manchester United win.