This Sunday’s game sees Manchester United travel to Goodison Park, where they’ll take on an Everton side who were in decent form before their blip away to Fulham.
The fixture is set to be a crucial one for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, as United find themselves in sixth place and in real danger of missing out on the top four if they fail to take all three points against the Toffees.
Everton could also still finish in seventh, where they would qualify for a spot in the Europa League if Manchester City manage to beat Watford in the FA Cup final, so it really is a significant fixture on the blue half of Merseyside this Sunday.
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With so much at stake, Football FanCast have taken a look at the finer details that could determine where the three points end up after the final whistle…
Now, this one could be interesting – assuming Luke Shaw’s absence doesn’t oblige Solskjaer to move Young to the other side of defence. Young has this week been the subject of some awful abuse from his own supporters after his horrible display in the Camp Nou on Tuesday, where he was torn to shreds by Barcelona phenomenon Lionel Messi.
Whilst Bernard isn’t quite on the same level as the Argentine, he is a diminutive, tricky player who showed just how difficult he can be to play against when he had Ainsley Maitland-Niles in knots a few weeks ago at Goodison Park.
Young has looked uncomfortable in defence all season, and with the Brazilian just starting to come into form, their battle could be telling.
Try to ignore Everton’s limp display at Fulham, and they were actually striking all the right chords against some of the league’s top teams. Marco Silva managed to take seven points off Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal by getting his players to press high up the pitch and win the ball in dangerous areas, and it worked a treat.
Something that United fans will moan to you about is their side’s lack of such commitment when pressuring an opponent. They try to do it under Solskjaer, but when not everyone is committed, gaps will inevitably appear.
United must hunt the Toffees in packs, or they will get hurt by the likes of Gylfi Sigurdsson, Richarlison, Bernard and Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
Idrissa Gueye and Andre Gomes have been bang in form in recent weeks, but the latter will be serving the first of a three-match suspension for a stamp on Aleksandar Mitrovic, which will seriously impact Gueye more than any other player.
The Senegalese international does the dirty work, whilst Gomes is the more composed, assured man on the ball with the technical skills to make good use of it – as he will be without that guile, Gueye will have his work cut out against Paul Pogba in the middle of the park.
Lookman has struggled to make Silva’s starting eleven all season, but his dynamism and directness from the bench can prove tough for opposition teams to handle – especially one as old and creaky as United’s.
The England Under-21 international could very easily get at Young in the final stages of the game and make something happen.
In Sanchez’s case, the Chilean featured from the bench against Barcelona and although it’s been a pretty miserable 18 months for the former Arsenal star at Old Trafford, United’s recent deficiency in attack could see Solskjaer turn to him if those problems continue.
In seven career appearances against Everton, Sanchez has bagged three goals and two assists.