Manchester United vs Burnley Preview: Two of the league's form sides clash in Lancashire derby
United won a feisty encounter when these two sides met in September (photo: Getty Images)

Manchester United vs Burnley Preview: Two of the league's form sides clash in Lancashire derby

Burnley make the short trip back to Manchester, looking to make up for a hammering in the same city at the weekend.

chris-lincoln
Chris Lincoln

Although Burnley were hammered 5-0 on the blue side of Manchester in the FA Cup on Saturday, no club outside of the industrial city have picked up more points than the Clarets in the last four Premier League matchdays.

Great form

All the talk has been about the sublime start Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has made to life on the red side of Manchester. With six Premier League wins to his name, the Norwegian finds himself just one away from the best ever start to a campaign since the inception of the competition nearly 30 years ago.

Adding two cup victories, including an important 3-1 victory over rivals Arsenal in the FA Cup on Friday, it seems as though everything Solskjaer touches turns to gold.

Yet Burnley have won three and drawn one of their last four outings, easing them clear of the relegation zone. However, they have lost all eight of their most recent outings against 'big six' sides, conceding 25 goals in the process.

Clarets don't fear Old Trafford

Burnley don't often win against United, picking up maximum points in just one of the last 26 meetings between the sides. United have also kept a clean sheet in all but two of the eight most recent matches played by the clubs.

Yet Burnley have enjoyed making the 30-mile trip to Old Trafford in recent years, drawing their last two as they showed no fear. Tuesday has also proven to be a luck day for manager Sean Dyche and is the only day of the week when he has not lost a Premier League game in five previous matches.

However, the 'new United' are enjoying a brand of free-flowing football with the shackles released and Burnley will be hoping to avoid a repeat of their visit to Manchester on Saturday.

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Injury problems vs numerous options

Two of those that started against City had a particularly torrid time - Kevin Long conceded an own goal before a dreadful mix up with the returning Nick Pope created the fifth goal of the afternoon. Both are unlikely to start this contest.

However, the visitors have numerous problems in wide positions. Full-backs Phil Bardsley and Matt Lowton are doubtful, as are wingers Robbie Brady and Johann Berg Gudmundsson. Aaron Lennon and Jon Walters are definitely out so the likes of Alexis Sanchez, Jesse Lingard and/or Anthony Martial could be hopeful of some joy in wider areas.

That is if Solskjaer does not spring another tactical surprise. Lingard has impressed in a 'false nine' position in recent weeks, whilst Romelu Lukaku created two goals from a wide right position against Arsenal. The Belgian enjoys playing against Burnley with four goals and two assists in his last six appearances.

Marcus Rashford is in the form of his life and could become the third youngest player in Premier League history to net in five successive games. Yet, like the rest of the United squad, his place is not guaranteed with so many players turning a corner after the Jose Mourinho era.

Even in defence, Chris Smalling is available and could break up the partnership of Phil Jones and Victor Lindelof. However, Marcos Rojo and Marouane Fellaini are both still absent.

 

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