Manchester United come up against their all-time highest goalscorer Wayne Rooney, with Derby County waiting for them at Pride Park in the fifth round of the FA Cup.
Goalkeeping errors at both ends meant Manchester United weren’t able to capitalise on dropped points by Leicester and Chelsea in the race for Champions League qualification at the weekend, drawing 1-1 with Everton.
Still, it’s now a run of eight straight games unbeaten in all competitions and they’ve made solid progress in the cups, thrashing Club Brugge 5-0 in the Europa League round of 32 last week and making it past Wolves (1-0 after a replay) and Tranmere (a 6-0 thrashing).
Expect lots of rotation from the Premier League giants here, with back-up cup goalkeeper Sergio Romero coming back in for the much-criticised David de Gea. The Argentina international actually has an excellent record this season, keeping a clean sheet in nine of 12 appearances in all competitions, conceding just three goals.
Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford and Lee Grant are all sidelined, while Axel Tuanzebe and Timothy Fosu-Mensah are doubts. January loan signing Odion Ighalo could make his second start here, having scored in his last one - last Thursday’s 5-0 thrashing of Brugge.
There will be plenty of attention on Wayne Rooney for the hosts here, and the veteran has put in a number of impressive performances for the Rams since becoming eligible to play at the turn of the year. His introduction initially saw an upturn in results, not least a 1-0 shock win away to Crystal Palace in the third round of the FA Cup, but those have dipped a little since he moved from playing deeper in a double pivot alongside young Max Bird and further forward into the number ten role.
Derby ended a run of four games without a win with a 3-1 victory at Sheffield Wednesday at the weekend, and a return to home soil will give them extra confidence. They’ve only lost twice at Pride Park all season, and are unbeaten in the last seven games there with five wins followed by two draws.
We recommend backing a Manchester United win here, and to deny the hosts a goal. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Red Devils have won five of their last eight games in all competitions, keeping a clean sheet on every occasion.
Man Utd to win and both teams NOT to score – 13/8 with bet365
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