Manchester United vs Burton Albion preview: Holders begin League Cup defence against Championship side

Manchester United will look to start their defence of the Carabao Cup against Championship side Burton Albion.

Manchester United vs Burton Albion preview: Holders begin League Cup defence against Championship side
Above: Manchester United training ahead of the clash with Basel | Photo: Getty Images/John Peters

Manchester United will be looking to begin the defence of their Carabao Cup title effectively, as they welcome Championship minnows Burton Albion to Old Trafford. 


Making it two in two? 

Last summer the then new United manager José Mourinho highlighted the then EFL Cup as one of his main priorities, and the 3-2 defeat of Southamton in February secured their second of three pieces of silverware for the Red Devils. 

Mourinho's spent big once again in the summer to accommodate for their title race and Champions League return, and they couldn't have asked for a better start. 

They currently sit pretty joint-top of the league with rivals Manchester City after goals from: Antonio Valencia, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Romelu Lukaku and Anthony Martial gave them a 4-0 win over Everton on Sunday.

Mourinho will certainly want to retain the Carabao Cup title as he looks to go for the clean sweep, so will look to make as good start against Nigel Clough's side. 


Facing a hefty test at the Theatre of Dreams 

Burton defied many of the odds last season on their promotion to the second-tier by managing to avoid relegation back to League One, Clough will expect another campaign ahead and The Brewers haven't made the best of starts. 

They currently find themselves down in 19th but pulled it around slightly on Saturday with a narrow 2-1 win over promotion favourites Fulham, but Clough admitted that he is not under any illusions of what his side will come up against at the Theatre of Dreams. 

"I watched the first 10 minutes," Clough stated in reference to United's win on Sunday. "Everton couldn't get out of their half."

"We will try and not make any mistakes and try to get out of our half," the coach stated. "They just penned them in."

"I don't think you can make plans for specific players," Clough proclaimed. "When you look at the squad they can use all internationals, we've got to be at our very best to match them."


Team news 

Mourinho is expected to name a strong side against The Brewers, with the likes of Luke Shaw, Michael Carrick, Scott McTominay and Sergio Romero all in contention for a possible start. 

The big blow will be the continued absence of Paul Pogba who picked up a injury in the win over Basel, Axel Tuanzebe will be absent with a back injury and the pair will join Marcos Rojo and Zlatan Ibrahimović on the sidelines. 

Clough has the advantage of being able to name a near full-fit squad, but there are still kinks in the armour for his side. 

One will be defender Jordan Brayford who is cup-tied having already played for Sheffield United, Will Miller is the only absentee with a hamstring injury. 

Manchester United will host Burton Albion in the third round of the Carabao Cup at Old Trafford on Wednesday, September 20 with kick-off at 8pm DST.