Harry Maguire starts but not Paul Pogba — Manchester United predicted line up vs Man City – George Smith

Manchester United will be looking to bounce back from last weekend’s goalless draw with Watford when they face arch rivals Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

United, who were beaten 2-0 by City in the reverse fixture at Old Trafford back in November, created a plethora of chances against the Hornets last time out but lacked a clinical touch in front of goal. And should West Ham win at Liverpool on Saturday evening and Arsenal beat Watford on Sunday afternoon, United could kick-off against City in sixth place.

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Interim boss Ralf Rangnick will be hoping to nail his team selection to perfection, with City set to pose the greatest threat that his team has come up against since he landed the job. He will have some big calls to make, particularly in defense.

However, goalkeeper David de Gea is a guaranteed starter between the posts. The Spaniard has been excellent this season and has been one of the very first names on the teamsheet, with his performances having improved as the campaign has unfolded.

Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw could both return to the back four They were both named on the bench last weekend as Rangnick looked to inject some fresh energy into his side after a hectic period.

Their inclusions in the team would mean that Victor Lindelof and Alex Telles would make way. Aaron Wan-Bissaka has been solid of late and his pace from him could be crucial against Raheem Sterling, while Raphael Varane is likely to start too.

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Midfielder Scott McTominay is back available for selection after missing the last two games through illness and Rangnick has confirmed that it is possible he could start. In a game where City are likely to dominate the ball and dictate the play, his presence in midfield could be important alongside the energy of Fred.

Bruno Fernandes is likely to play just ahead of them in the No.10 position and be tasked with the challenge of finding spaces and passes to get United up the pitch. He scored at the Etihad last season and will be hoping lightning strikes twice.

As for the front-three, Rangnick could have some difficult calls to make in the wide areas, though Cristiano Ronaldo is likely to spearhead the attack.

Anthony Elanga deserves to hold onto his starting berth and take up the residence on the right-wing with Jadon Sancho returning and starting on the left. It would, however, mean that Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford are both forced to the bench.

That would mean that Rangnick would be making four changes to the side that drew with Watford.

Manchester United predicted line-up vs Manchester City.

Predicted United line-up vs Man City: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Maguire, Shaw; McTominay, Fred, Fernandes; Elanga, Ronaldo, Sancho.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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