Wolves drew 1-1 at Molineux on Sunday against Tottenham Hotspur thanks to a late header from Romain Saiss. This result helped the Wanderers to bounce back from a poor loss to Burnley and Nuno Espirito Santo will be hoping they can pull off another impressive result on Tuesday.
Ole Gunnar Solksjaer made an enforced change to his side at the King Power Stadium last time out and it seemed as if it would pay off until they conceded a late equaliser.
Victor Lindelof started at right-back with Eric Bailly slotting in at centre-back. The Swedish defender was forced to play out of position after Aaron Wan-Bissaka picked up a slight knock which ruled him out of the game.
Lindelof was then substituted after picking up an injury himself, giving Solskjaer a selection problem in the defence if Wan Bissaka isn’t fit enough to play. Although he has returned to training ahead of the game, Bailly is likely to start once again and partner captain Harry Maguire at centre-back on Tuesday.
Daniel James has started the last two league games but maybe rested with Mason Greenwood taking his place. He will likely be joined by Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes behind one of Anthony Martial, or Edinson Cavani up front. Cavani has made an impact in all of his appearances for the club so far and may start if Solksjaer is to rotate his team.
After starting as substitutes on Saturday, two of Paul Pogba, Donny van de Beek and Nemanja Matic could be drafted in, rotating with the common starting midfield pair of Fred and Scott McTominay.
A lot of changes are expected from all teams in this busy Christmas and New Year period, with some unexpected line-ups being predicted. Solksjaer may put trust in his squad players to continue their unbeaten run at Old Trafford on Tuesday.
De Gea, Wan Bissaka, Bailly, Maguire, Telles, Matic, Pogba, Greenwood, Fernandes, Rashford, Cavani
Despite their reputation of playing in a three at the back formation, Wolves have started to regularly start with four at the back.
Espirito Santo had his side lined up in a 4-2-3-1 system against Spurs last time out and they performed well, attacking quickly, and keeping possession comfortably. This may have been due to the attacking personnel that the Wanderers started with.
Fabio Silva led the line with Adama Traore, Pedro Neto, and Daniel Podence behind him. This pacey and tricky front four caused problems all game for Jose Mourinho’s team and they’ll be hoping to do the same to Manchester United if they start.
Rotation is to be expected, but with Wolves’ injury problems they may not be able to change as much as other teams. Their substitutes bench consisted of mainly teenagers on Sunday, with three of them yet to play a first-team game.
This is a worry for Nuno Espirito Santo who is missing Willy Boly, Jonny, Raul Jimenez, and Leander Dendoncker through injury. Meaning it is likely that the line-up won’t change too much despite the team only playing two days earlier.
There could be a change to the back four with Nelson Semedo, Conor Coady, Saiss being joined by Rayan Ait-Nouri at left-back after Marcal picked up a knock last time out. Ruben Neves and Joao Moutinho could start in central midfield, however, Owen Otasowie could come into the 11 after featuring in recent games.
Patricio, Semedo, Coady, Saiss, Ait-Nouri, Neves, Otasowie, Traore, Podence, Neto, Silva
An end to end game is expected, with both sides known for their blistering counter-attacks this season. It could be a battle of the front fours to see how much of an impact they can have on the game.
As well as the attack, a key part of this game will be the defence of both teams. With prolific attackers running at them it’ll be important for the Wolves defence to stay concentrated to cope with Fernandes, Rashford, and Cavani if they are all to start. Manchester United will need to be wary of Wolves’ width, as Semedo and Ait-Nouri will break forward and cause problems for the full-backs.
Solskjaer’s side should have enough to win the game with their rotation playing a big part and they will be expected to continue their impressive unbeaten run on Tuesday.