Manchester United will play Southampton in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon at Saint Mary’s Stadium.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side delivered an impressive start to the new season in their 5-1 win over Leeds at Old Trafford last weekend and are hoping for two straight wins against Southampton, whom they enjoyed playing last season .

United won 3-2 in Southampton last season thanks to an expertly crafted late brace from Edinson Cavani that inspired a comeback, but the result was never in doubt in the second leg when the Reds beat the Saints 9-0.

Jadon Sancho made his debut from the bench against Leeds. However, with Raphael Varane’s transfer delayed, the Frenchman was revealed and had to watch from the stands – but the two are in the running for the start on the south coast.

But which players will Solskjaers XI make against Southampton? This is how our MEN authors think United should position themselves …

Samuel Luckyhurst

Two years ago United won their opening game by four goals and made a change in the next game, with a right-winger coming on. Jadon Sancho for Daniel James is the logical change from the team that beat up Leeds.

Southampton began their campaign with James Ward-Prowse and Oriol Romeu in midfield, so United has little inclination to split Scott McTominay and Fred. Nine or ten of the starters on Saturday will certainly compete at St. Mary’s again, but there is every chance that Solskjaer will tactically tweak a team against which he used a midfield diamond last season.

Raphael Varane has only trained for a week and is needed more against Raul Jimenez than against Adam Armstrong.

A change

Tyrone Marshall

Given United’s good performance over the first weekend of the season, it is clear that no major changes are needed on the south coast.

It would be a surprise if the back four didn’t stay the same. There will be calls for Varane, but the fact that he was not included in the squad for Tuesday’s friendly against Burnley suggests he still has a bit of work to do in terms of fitness before heading off for a start is considered.

In midfield the Fred and McTominay axis worked wonderfully against Leeds and it makes sense to continue here, with Fernandes back in the No. 10 of which he is so dangerous.

The only change I would make would be the first three, where Sancho should be ready to start after an hour against Burnley on Tuesday. He can replace James on the right with Greenwood still in charge and Pogba in his hybrid position on the left.

Which players would your starting XI be? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Steven Railston

It would often be foolish to suggest that Solskjaer will have to make changes after his side strolls to a 5-1 win, but United’s success in the transfer market this summer means they are now in a jealous position – they have a relative strength in depth.

That means Varane and Sancho could make full debuts – the latter came off the bench against Leeds – while Pogba can hold the position that should give him a stellar performance against Leeds where he posted four assists.

Greenwood led United’s line-up confidently and energetically and he can take advantage of the question marks surrounding the hosts’ defense.

Continue reading
Continue reading