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Manchester United: Ronaldo axed in predicted XI for the derby

Manchester United will take on the league Champions in the Manchester derby later today, and Ralf Rangnick could make some huge changes to his team ahead of the clash which could either pay off massively or put the side in a vulnerable position in the pursuit of a top-four finish in the Premier League.

It has been reported that Cristiano Ronaldo is potentially out of the squad after he was not seen arriving at the team hotel alongside his team-mates, suggesting that he won’t be selected to start for the side today, but there has been no official confirmation as of yet as to whether the Portuguese striker will be in the squad or starting line up.

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Edwin van der Sar celebrating after Manchester United score against Bolton

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The German coach has hinted that Edinson Cavani and Scott McTominay are in contention for selection following the pair returning to full training this week, however it is still uncertain if they are both ready to play in this game.

With that being said, this is how Football FanCast predicts that Manchester United will line-up against Manchester City today…

We predict that we will see four changes from the side that drew with Watford last weekend in the Premier League, with Rangnick changing formation to a 4-3-3.

The first change we expect to see is Marcus Rashford in the centre forward role, especially considering Ronaldo is allegedly absent from the squad, giving the 24-year-old a fantastic opportunity to prove his worth in the team to Rangnick, after struggling to make an impact so far this season in his performances.

Rashford who was hailed “unbelievable” by Rio Ferdinand, could really seize the chance to silence the doubters today by offering a clinical attacking threat through the middle, with both Jadon Sancho and Anthony Elanga by his side on the wings to add to the creativity in front of goal.

Speaking of Sancho, he is the second change we predict to see in the team against title-challenging Manchester City, returning to the side after missing out on a start against Watford. With Rangnick surely wanting to get ahead early in the game, the young winger would be the perfect selection for getting the best chance to score first.

Should Rashford start against Man City?

Yes

Yes

No

No

The third and fourth changes we expect to see in the team come into the defensive line, with England internationals Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire returning to their positions. Maguire may resume his centre-back partnership with Raphael Varane with Shaw imposing his experience on the left wing which could add further attacking threat for United to take control of the game early on.

There is a lot to play for in this game for both clubs, and despite the pressures of a derby, both sides of Manchester have something to play for, so Rangnick will be hoping that his team can focus on the task at hand and take something from the game today to keep them as close to the top four as possible.

In other news: Rangnick had a howler letting go of Van de Beek

Article title: Manchester United: Ronaldo axed in predicted XI for the derby

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