Dubai: Manchester United have the opportunity to stretch their winning run at Old Trafford to 14 games in all tournaments when they face struggling Leeds United in the Premier League clash at Old Trafford tomorrow night.
Erik Ten Hag’s side beat Crystal Palace 2-1 at the weekend but had to survive the last 20 minutes with 10 men after Casemiro was shown a red card.
Meanwhile, the Whites’ relegation fears worsened after they went down 1-0 to Nottingham Forest. It was the last match for coach Jesse Marsch who was sacked following the team’s 10th defeat of the season. They have won just four out of their 20 league matches and it was a case of when not if the axe would fall on the American who had been in charge at Elland Road for less than a year.
On the up
The managerless Yorkshire club are struggling badly and they will not be looking forward to the trip to face the Red Devils who are clearly on the up.
Those early-season defeats to Brentford and Brighton feel like an eternity ago for Ten Hag’s men and following a fine run of form they are in the driving seat for Champions League football next season. They currently sit comfortably in third place in the table and are just three points away from rivals Manchester City.
Each of United’s last 13 home games have ended in victory and Ten Hag will feel confident of adding another against a woeful Leeds side who have found creating chances and scoring goals a problem. They won’t be buoyed by the fact United have only conceded six league goals at home which is the joint-best home defensive record alongside Newcastle.
Leeds are without a victory in seven top-flight games and are only above the relegation zone by goal difference. They are 17th in the table and have the same number of points as Everton, but should they suffer a heavy defeat they could find themselves in the bottom three. They certainly do not travel well having lost seven of their last nine away matches in the league and considering United have taken 10 points from 12 on offer against them since 2020 there appears to only be one outcome here.
Brazilian Casemiro will serve the first of a three-game ban after seeing red at Palace but Ten Hag could call on new Bayern Munich loanee Marcel Sabitzer to fill in. Anthony Martial, Donny van de Beek and Christian Eriksen are all out for the hosts, but Diogo Dalot should be back in contention.
Leeds will have Robin Koch back from a ban while Crysencio Summerville is fit again but Archie Gray, Rodrigo, Stuart Dallas, Sonny Perkins and Adam Forshaw are all doubts.
The only glimmer of hope the away side have is the fact United have lost three of their four league matches in which Casemiro has not played. But anything other than a win for Ten Hag’s free-flowing team will be a shock. With Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes and Anthony gelling really well, United shouldn’t just get three points but a glut of goals too.