Big Match Breakdown: Stoke City v Manchester United
Mourinho’s men head to the Potteries
Manchester United travel to Stoke City on Saturday evening looking to maintain their excellent start to the season.
Jose Mourinho’s men sit atop the Premier League after three games. Meanwhile, their opponents are 11th after a mixed start. A win for the hosts could send them up to 2nd in the table. Three points for the Red Devils will keep them at the summit ahead of their Champions League fixture against FC Basel.
The Coral News Team take a look at all the vital information in the lead up to the Saturday evening clash.
Manchester United haven’t won in the Potteries since 2013. In fact United have failed to beat Stoke in four of their last five meetings. Overall however, the Red Devils do hold the upper hand. Man Utd have won 43 out of 106 meetings between the two sides.
And the Red Devils look likely to continue that here. They head into the clash in fine form. With nine points from nine, 10 goals scored and none conceded, United are a frightening prospect. Stoke have started more modestly. The Staffordshire side have a win, a draw and a defeat to their name so far.
The likely XIs
Man Utd could hand a starting berth to Marcus Rashford. The 19-year-old scored a spectacular goal for England against Slovakia on Monday night. And he netted in his last United appearance too. If Rashford does come in it’s Anthony Martial that will make way. Otherwise the Red Devils should remain unchanged.
The hosts on the other hand could hand a debut to £18m summer signing Kevin Wimmer. That would signal a change to three at the back for Mark Hughes’ men.
Up-front Eric Choupo-Moting is expected to miss out. The forward has picked up a hamstring injury. He looks set to be replaced by Saido Berahino, who is still searching for his first City goal.
A lot will depend on if the Stoke defence can keep Man Utd’s potent attack quiet. Mark Hughes likes to play with a back three. And that means Kurt Zouma, Ryan Shawcross and Wimmer will have to be at their best this weekend.
Shawcross will likely be in charge of shackling the free-scoring Lukaku. Meanwhile, Zouma will have his hands full with Marcus Rashford.
The England youngster is in hot scoring form at the moment. And Mourinho could be tempted to unleash the youngster on a Potters defence that lacks sufficient pace.
With Man Utd in such good form in front of goal Coral are also looking at the individual goalscorer market. Lukaku has three from three and is 13/5 to bag the first here. Teammate Rashford is 7/4 to continue his streak and net anytime. Stoke’s best hope is Jese. He scored against Arsenal last month and could repeat the trick at 3/1 anytime.
It’s fair to say the visitors are expected to do the business. And it’s 7/5 that they win to nil for the fourth game in a row. If it doesn’t go to plan though there could be some solace in a 1-1 score bet at 7/1.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing