Manchester United will look to build on the midweek win over Brentford when they host Everton at Old Trafford on Saturday.

We continue to move to the business end of the 2022/23 season. And in the Premier League, Gameweek 30 begins with the lunchtime kick-off between Manchester United and Everton at Old Trafford on Saturday.

Manchester United endured a forgettable March after winning the Carabao Cup at the end of February. The Red Devils did not win in the Premier League while failing to score a goal in three successive games. And while April began with the defeat to Newcastle United last weekend, Erik ten Hag’s men bounced back with a 1-0 win over Brentford on Wednesday.

On the other hand, Everton pendulated between wins and losses in the early days of Sean Dyche’s tenure. But they have gradually picked up form and are currently on a four-game unbeaten run, although they have played out a stalemate in their last three outings.

The reverse fixture saw Manchester United come from a goal down to beat Everton 2-1. The Red Devils also beat the Toffees 3-1 in the FA Cup third round in January. The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at the encounter ahead of the latest meeting between the two sides.

Team News & Tactics

Manchester United

Erik ten Hag has a new injury concern hampering his preparations ahead of his side’s latest fixture. Against Everton on Saturday, the Manchester United manager will be bereft of the services of five first-team players.

Luke Shaw is the latest absentee after sustaining a hamstring injury against Brentford. While the Englishman might not be a long-term absentee, the Everton game might have come too soon for him. But there is some good news, as Christian Eriksen might return to the matchday squad this weekend.

However, Casemiro remains on the sidelines as he is yet to serve two more matches of his suspension. In addition, Tom Heaton (ankle), Donny van de Beek (knee), and Alejandro Garnacho (ankle) are unavailable for the foreseeable future.

David de Gea picks himself between the sticks, with Manchester United lining up in a 4-2-3-1 formation. Aaron Wan-Bissaka has recovered from an illness and should replace Diogo Dalot, who has been sub-par in the last few games. Wan-Bissaka will join Raphael Varane, Lisandro Martinez, and Tyrell Malacia in the defensive unit.

Marcel Sabitzer was solid in the middle of the park earlier this week. And the Austrian midfielder should pair up with Fred in the double pivot on Saturday. But Bruno Fernandes should take up a more advanced slot, with Sabitzer being a box-to-box midfielder.

As for the offensive unit, Jadon Sancho might drop to the bench, considering Anthony Martial has regained sharpness. The Frenchman will spearhead the Manchester United attack against Everton, with Marcus Rashford moving to the left flank. And Antony picks himself on the right wing.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): de Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Martinez, Malacia; Fred, Sabitzer; Antony, Bruno Fernandes, Rashford; Martial


Like his counterpart in the Manchester United dugout, Sean Dyche has a new roster issue ahead of the trip to Old Trafford. The Everton manager will be without four first-team players due to injuries and suspension on Saturday.

Abdoulaye Doucoure misses the game after seeing red against Tottenham Hotspur on Monday. The 30-year-old has joined Ruben Vinagre (Achilles), Andros Townsend (knee), and Dominic Calvert-Lewin (thigh) on the sidelines.

Jordan Pickford is an automatic pick between the sticks, with Everton lining up in a 3-4-3 formation in front of him. Dyche should prefer the new system after initially favouring the 4-5-1 in his early days as the Toffees’ boss.

Michael Keane has been resurgent in the last few games and scored against Tottenham. And the English defender will join James Tarkowski and Ben Godfrey in the central defensive unit. Meanwhile, Seamus Coleman and Vitaliy Mykolenko will be the two wing-backs.

The duo will have the freedom to express themselves but also drop deep to create a back five in the defensive phases. Amadou Onana and Idrissa Gueye should pair up in the middle of the park, with Doucoure’s absence forcing the formation change.

As for the offensive unit, Alex Iwobi, Demarai Gray, and Dwight McNeil pick themselves. The three players have been in fine form for Everton and have locked down the three attacking spots. So Ellis Simms and Neal Maupay should be the backup attackers on the bench.

Probable Lineup (3-4-3): Pickford; Keane, Tarkowski, Godfrey; Coleman, Onana, Gueye, Mykolenko; Iwobi, Gray, McNeil

Everton XI vs Manchester United

Key Stats

  • Manchester United have won 38 Premier League games against Everton, the second-highest amount of victories one team has against another in the competition (Manchester United 39 vs Tottenham). The Toffees have won just one of their last 29 Premier League away games against the Red Devils (D8 L20), a 1-0 victory in December 2013.
  • Everton have scored in each of their last nine Premier League games against Manchester United. They have never scored in ten consecutive league games against the Red Devils. It is also Manchester United’s longest current run without a clean sheet against a Premier League opponent.
  • Everton have picked up 12 points in their nine Premier League matches under Sean Dyche (W3 D3 L3), seven more than they won in their final 12 top-flight games under Frank Lampard (5 – W1 D2 L9). But the Toffees have won just two of their last 31 Premier League away games (D9 L20), picking up 2-1 wins at Leicester (May 2022) and Southampton (October 2022).
  • Anthony Martial has been involved in 11 goals in 15 appearances for Manchester United against Everton in all competitions (seven goals, four assists), his highest against any opponent for the Red Devils.
  • Among Everton players in the Premier League this season, Alex Iwobi ranks top for possession won in the final third (26), chances created (47) and successful take-ons (41). They are also seasonal highs for Iwobi for possession won in the final third and chances created, only completing more take-ons in two previous campaigns, most recently 2020/21 (45).

Player to Watch

Anthony Martial

Embed from Getty Images

Marcus Rashford is invariably among the players in the spotlight when Manchester United take the field. But Anthony Martial is our pick for this section as he continues to make his way back from his injury travails. The Frenchman has struggled to make his mark this season due to persistent hip injuries.

But he is fit and available and has regained his sharpness in the last few weeks. And with his favourite opponent visiting Old Trafford, he will be raring to go and deliver the goods for Manchester United. In addition, with the 27-year-old facing an uncertain future at the club, he will look to find a stable footing and secure his long-term position.


Manchester United 2-1 Everton

The two teams come into this game on the back of contrasting runs of form. While Manchester United have struggled to score goals in the Premier League, Everton are finding the back of the net consistently. But the Red Devils are often too strong a challenge to overcome at Old Trafford.

So while Everton might beat David de Gea, Jordan Pickford will be in for a long day at work. With that in mind, The Hard Tackle predicts a hard-fought victory for Manchester United. We are going ahead with a 2-1 win for Erik ten Hag and his charges.

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