Manchester
United v Leicester City: Pre-Match Analysis

The Foxes face their fourth match in 15 days against tough opposition in Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s Manchester United side who are hoping to win their fifth game in a row at home since 2018.

The Foxes may be boosted with the news that former defender Harry Maguire is set to miss the fixture due to an ankle injury. The 28-year-old is yet to miss a game since signing for the Red Devils back in 2019.

However, an issue for the Blues is that they are without Jonny Evans following his withdrawal from Friday's defeat against Newcastle United because of an ongoing heel problem, and with an FA cup final on the horizon, they may not want to risk him any more than needed.

Brendan Rodgers’ men have shown signs of fatigue as of recent picking up only one point against Southampton and Newcastle respectfully and face Chelsea at Wembley on Saturday, in the FA cup final.

Leicester City have yet to be defeated by any side in the top six this season and have already beaten United back in March as well as a 2-2 draw in December.

Time to bounce back

United boss Solskjaer stated that he would be willing to change his entire starting line-up with Liverpool looming on Thursday which could be music to Leicester fans ears as United haven’t lost since January in the league but have a heavy fixture load coming up with the Foxes, Liverpool, and Fulham to play in seven days and a Europa League final to worry about towards the end of the month.

Leicester City are forcing their fans to bite on their nails a little too hard following a disappointing 4-2 home defeat to Newcastle United but will look to react against a side they’ve already comprehensively beaten this season and with striker Kelechi Iheanacho looking to add to his 15 goals in his past 16 appearances in all competitions.

It may not be a surprise to see a slightly weakened side with Ayoze Perez impressing upon his late cameo appearance for James Maddison who lacked the killer instinct which is expected following his recent return from injury.

Marc Albrighton may keep his starting place thanks to his impressive goal and can expose the United backline who would miss Maguire's ariel presence.

The Foxes are also expected to start both Jamie Vardy and Kelechi Iheanacho with the latter overtaking Vardy for the top goal scorer within the club.

Defensive issues

Brendan Rodgers’ may have not been as prepared as he would have liked, for a late squad change against Newcastle following Jonny Evans pulling up during the warm-up and was certainly not prepared to be 4-0 down after 73 minutes.

Leicester now sit in third but with Chelsea to play twice as well as Tottenham Hotspur, the foxes may feel the pressure is on with Liverpool having games in hand and only have the league to focus on.

Defensive pairing Wesley Fofana and Caglar Soyuncu didn’t look at ease on Friday without their Norther-Irish compatriot with the latter making a costly error for the Magpies’ first goal.

Rodgers has found success with Wing-back options accompanied with a back three, so versatile Ghanaian, Daniel Amartey may find himself earning a rare start at centre-back with Christian Fuchs returning to the squad on the bench.

Verdict

Both sides will be defensively weakened but with Liverpool only 48 hours away for the Red Devils, United have already secured Champions League and are just waiting for their noisy neighbours Manchester City to win for them to seal the Premier League so may start to prioritise their forthcoming matches.

Brendan Rodgers and his men may start to feel the heat as they would not want to replicate their mis-fortunate end of last season but with a draw and loss to Southampton and Newcastle, the Foxes must win at least of their last three matches and hope Liverpool do not conquer all four of their remaining fixtures.

Jonny Evans is a huge miss but so is Harry Maguire and with Leicester wanting to secure a Champions League place as well as a strong performance heading into the FA Cup final, they might just edge it.

Predicted score: Manchester United 1-3 Leicester City


 

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