Manchester United Predicted XI vs Everton: Who will Mourinho pick as the Reds look to bounce back in the league?

Manchester United Predicted XI vs Everton: Who will Mourinho pick as the Reds look to bounce back in the league?

United travel to Goodison Park in desperate need of a win to prevent slipping further away from the pack.

AlexTurk
Alex Turk

Sunday evening's fixture sees Manchester United, with Jose Mourinho on the touchline this time, go up against an Everton side currently in a torrid run of form in the Premier League, earning just three wins in the last 10 games. Barring last season, where United came out 3-0 winners at Goodison Park, the Toffees normally show up against the Reds so it certainly won't be a walkover.

In Defence

Goalkeeper - David De Gea

David De Gea certainly won't be winning a fourth consecutive Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year award judging on his current form. The Spaniard seems low on confidence at the moment and has made a few costly mistakes in between the sticks already this season, the fumble leading to Joe Allen's equaliser in the 1-1 draw at home to Stoke City and then a parry from Dimitri Payet's low shot handing Ashley Fletcher his first goal for West Ham United on a plate in the recent 4-1 walkover at Old Trafford are the most notable inclusions.

Despite his average form, there's little chance of Sergio Romero getting picked over De Gea in a Premier League match. With some of United's key defenders returning from injury soon, while Marcos Rojo and Phil Jones are forming a stronger bond as every game goes by, fans will be praying that the 26-year-old regains the confidence which has made him into one of the greatest keepers in the world over the last few years sooner rather than later.

Right-back - Antonio Valencia

There's nothing really to say about this man right now, if he isn't put in the side tomorrow you would seriously have to consider what is going through Jose Mourinho's mind. Antonio Valencia has played in three games since returning from a wrist injury and has won Man of the Match twice, but he doesn't need awards to show his progress as a right-back because you can see how far he's come from the stands every single match he plays in.

In past seasons the Ecuadorian would bomb down the wing in promising fashion but then just blast a low cross at the first man, now he's acting as one of the main attacking outlets in Mourinho's set-up as well as showing an impressive defensive work rate. The now-fan favourite looks set to start at right-back tomorrow due to the manager's willingness to play Matteo Darmian at left-back instead of Daley Blind and Luke Shaw at the moment.

Centre-back - Phil Jones

With Chris Smalling still out and Eric Bailly back in training but unavailable, Phil Jones is a certain starter against Everton. Uncountable amounts of United fans were hoping that the England international would be sold in the summer after seemingly failing to live up to the hype made by Sir Alex Ferguson when he signed in 2011. However, Jones has more or less impressed supporters in every game he's featured in since Jose Mourinho took charge and is now looking like a very good backup option if there's another injury crisis in the near future.

There are doubts about his aerial ability and composure on the ball but many forget that he's still 24 years old and not at his prime yet so there's still room for improvement. He's played five consecutive games for Manchester United now and it's unlikely that Jose will want to move the defence around too much.

Centre-back - Marcos Rojo

The Argentinian defender has been a second choice left-back in recent times but Jose Mourinho appears to have found a new role which makes him look like the player United signed two years ago. He's been playing in the centre-back position while Smalling and Bailly have been injured and has looked like a rejuvenated player showing pace, strength and improved defensive ability.

If Marcos Rojo continues to impress, fans of the club might lay off him in the future but just one mistake could change everyone's view on him and for many, it'll be great to see Eric Bailly back sooner rather than later. Due to no other options in the position this weekend, apart from Daley Blind who is likely to feature on the bench or at left-back with Luke Shaw is out, Rojo is very likely to get a nod which would complete a centre-back partnership that has conceded four in five. 

Left-back - Matteo Darmian

Matteo Darmian's inclusion in some of the latest Premier League matches has baffled many supporters seen as though he's been playing at left-back while Luke Shaw has struggled to get into the squad and Daley Blind has been warming the bench. It's not known why Mourinho seems to prefer a right-back at left-back at the moment but he obviously has he reasons, even if it isn't popular Darmian is likely to start there again tomorrow.

Luke Shaw is definitely out of the game through injury so the only other option would be Blind, however, Jose Mourinho seems to like having one defender on the bench and due to his versatility, it's likely that the Dutchman will take that position. Darmian is still widely expected to leave in January but there is still time to save his United career and he'll be trying to give himself the best chance possible with some more good defensive performances. 

Midfield

Centre-midfield - Paul Pogba

Paul Pogba missed Wednesday's cup win against West Ham United through suspension after getting booked for 'diving' in the last league game but he's now back in contention for a place and it's very likely that he'll return to the starting lineup straight away. The French midfielder endured a somewhat underwhelming start to the season after he returned to the club for a world record fee but he now seems to have brushed aside the haters and is looking much more suited to the Premier League.

In a recent advertisement shoot with Adidas, the 23-year-old told Sky Sports that he "feels at home" at Old Trafford and his recent performances have perfectly shown that's the case. He's been controlling the midfield alongside Michael Carrick and Ander Herrera while showing brilliant dribbling traits as he glides past opposition with ease, this man is starting to look like the player Jose Mourinho wants to build his evolution around.

Centre-midfield - Ander Herrera

Ander Herrera has been right up there in contention as one of the best players so far this season with commanding performances in nearly every game he's played in.

The Spaniard's ability to complete the transition from defence to attack so quickly has made him a treasured part of Jose Mourinho's plans and despite United's immense record with Carrick in the side, it seems like Herrera is undroppable at the moment. The experienced English midfielder could do with a rest anyway ahead of the long trip to Ukraine in midweek for a crucial Europa League tie against Zorya Luhansk

The forward line

Right-wing - Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Simply because of this man, Mourinho may feel the need to change the formation from 4-3-3 to 4-2-3-1, but there are still questions over whether Mourinho will give Mkhitaryan a second consecutive start or Portuguese will just go with the same front three of Lingard, Rashford and Ibrahimovic that failed to beat Stoke and Burnley at home. Henrikh Mkhitaryan has started two matches since returning from injury suffered while playing for Armenia and has won the Man of the Match award twice, as well as assisting twice in the convincing victory against West Ham on Wednesday.

Now he's proved that he has what it takes against Premier League opposition and the Armenian will be hoping that he gets the nod in what would be his first Premier League start since the defeat to Manchester City in September, the fans will be hoping the same. We could also see Mkhitaryan in the middle if Mourinho goes with Juan Mata on the right like he has been doing in recent games but these positions would seemingly make the most sense.

Centre-attacking-midfield - Juan Mata

Mata was rested against West Ham in the EFL Cup but he'll definitely be back in the starting XI for this after his numerous impressive performances has earnt him the label of being Jose Mourinho's main attacking outlet apart from Ibrahimovic. Juan Mata always turns up in big games and, with the top four teams not looking like they're dropping many points in the near future, this game is as big as any.

The small Spanish midfield uses his size to fit into gaps on the field that defenders don't feel the need to cover which explains the amount he has contributed to Manchester United goals this season and he's turning into a vital member in the spine of the team. It was mentioned earlier that David De Gea is likely to miss out on the Player of the Year award at the club this season, that's because this guy is the clear favourite.

Left-wing - Anthony Martial

You can't say that Anthony Martial has been out of favour under Jose Mourinho but he has really struggled to regain the level of performance that he showed in his debut season at United last term. Despite showing a lack of confidence in the opening quarter of the season, the young French forward scored twice using that killer instinct we know and love on Wednesday and Michael Carrick joined Jose Mourinho to sing high praise for him.

This is the hardest position to call in this team because of Mourinho being a huge fan of Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford on the wing but he might have learnt not to change a winning team and the logical thing to do would be to keep the same attack with the inclusion of Mata. 

Striker - Zlatan Ibrahimovic

'Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been awful this season and he's past it, have you seen how many chances he's missed?' That's all we've heard this season from fans of rival clubs and pundits but after two goals in midweek his tally for the season is now at 11 goals. Manchester United's top goalscorer in Louis van Gaal's first season in charge was Wayne Rooney with 14 goals... 14, so it's not exactly bad is it and now Zlatan has earnt himself a nomination for the Premier League November Player of the Month.

The Swedish striker is Mourinho's #1 man this season and has already confirmed his intent to stay next season as well so it's extremely unlikely that he'll be dropped while in the form he's currently enjoying. 

VAVEL Logo
CHAT