Manchester United - Bournemouth Preview: Red Devils must win to have any chance of the top 4

Louis van Gaal's side host the Cherries on Sunday knowing that anything less than a win will see them miss out on Champions League football next season.

Manchester United - Bournemouth Preview: Red Devils must win to have any chance of the top 4
Photo: Jonathan Walsh/VAVEL UK

Manchester United play their final game of the Premier League season against Bournemouth on Sunday at Old Trafford knowing that anything less than a win and hopes of a top-four finish are over.

The Red Devils will be relying on Swansea City to do them a favour on Sunday when they play Manchester City. United need Swansea to win the game to have any chance of finishing in the top-four.

United are in this position after losing 3-2 against West Ham United on Tuesday night in a game which was so crucial as if they would have won top-four would have been in their own hands going into this game.

The Red Devils though also need to be careful as if they lose they could finish as low as seventh if West Ham and Southampton win. United will want to finish their season well at home in a game against very tricky opponents. 

Bournemouth have had a fantastic first season in the Premier League as they made sure of their safety with a few games to spare. The Cherries come into the game in 16th position on 42 points and will be looking to do the double over the Reds.

The Cherries haven't won any of their last four league games, losing three and drawing one, but that doesn't matter as they have exceeded many people's expectations this season by making sure they were safe early on.

Previous meetings

The last meeting between these sides at Old Trafford was in an FA Cup clash back in 1989 when United won the game 1-0 thanks to a goal from Brian McClair. The most recent meeting though was back in December at the Vitality Stadium when Bournemouth won 2-1 to cause a huge upset over the Reds. Goals that day for the Cherries came from Junior Stanislas and Joshua King while Marouane Fellaini scored for United.

Fellaini scored United's goal during their defeat to Bournemouth in December | Photo: Getty
Fellaini scored United's goal during their defeat to Bournemouth in December. | Photo: Getty

Team News

The Red Devils go into the game missing quite a few players as Louis van Gaal looks to pick a team that will get the job done.

Luke Shaw and Bastian Schweinsteiger are both out for the rest of the season with injuries while Adnan Januzaj will miss the game after suffering an injury in training. 

Matteo Darmian is unlikely to play after suffering an injury against Norwich City last weekend while Ashley Young is a doubt for the game as he only returned to training a few days ago.

Fellaini will serve the final game of his three-match suspension he picked up after the Leicester City game a couple of weeks ago.

Eddie Howe, on the other hand, has no new fresh injury concerns to contend with for the game, with only Sylvain Distin and Adam Smith remaining out injured for the game.

Howe has vowed to put out his strongest possible team for the game with United so Callum Wilson, King and Matt Ritchie are set to be recalled to the starting lineup.

Manchester United will host Bournemouth at Old Trafford on Sunday, May 15th with kick-off at 3:00PM BST.