Manchester United are coming off one of their worst performances – and result – of the current Premier League season. After falling 0-1 against West Bromwich at home, Jose Mourinho’s men will try to respond quickly because honestly, there is not a lot of time left to do so. With the team facing Bournemouth on Wednesday and playing in the FA Cup semi-final during the weekend, United have entered crunch time. And this is the time where players need to be at their best. Otherwise, United might be at risk of not losing second place in the standings, but also enduring a trophy-less season.
Just like it happened in our last preview ahead of the WBA game, the team news section in our previews will be extremely short. Jose Mourinho confirmed during the pre-match presser that he has a fully fit squad to choose from. The lone absentee will be Sergio Romero, as the Argentinian goalkeeper is still “a few weeks away” from returning after the injury he sustained with La Albiceleste in the friendly against Spain a few weeks ago.
One thing to note is that there will be “places up for grabs” in this game, according to Mourinho himself. He indicated that if a player plays well here, then he might get a chance to feature in the semifinal against Tottenham. So there could be a lot of mix and matching in this contest, especially after the team’s poor display this past weekend.
On the other hand, Bournemouth should only be without long-term absentees Tyrone Mings and Junior Stanislas (knee) and Adam Smith (MCL knee ligament). The rest of the team is fit and available.
Manchester United only have the Premier League and the FA Cup to concentrate after their UEFA Champions League exit at the hands of Sevilla. But it seems the European exit could end up being a blessing in disguise for The Red Devils, as that has allowed them to focus in the quest to seal the second place in the Premier League standings. They might be coming off a disappointing 0-1 loss to West Bromwich at home, but prior to that defeat they were riding a five-game winning streak that included a huge 3-2 win over Manchester City at Etihad Stadium. Playing like they did against City would be a good way to leave the loss against West Brom behind.
On the other hand, Bournemouth are all but safe from relegation. They sit in 11th place with a 10-point lead over the bottom-three teams and with 12 points left to play, there is just no way that The Cherries will go all the way down to the 18th place – or worst – this season. As such, The Cherries are already planning for a fourth consecutive season in England’s top-flight. Recent form should be a concern, however, as they have won just one of their last eight PL matches.
United don’t have a lot of history against Bournemouth since these two sides have met only 13 times since their first game back in 1949. The Reds still have the upper hand, though, with eight wins, three draws and just two losses. They are also riding a four-game undefeated streak against The Cherries at the Premier League level.
Manchester United have been on top form of late, and they will try to leave the awful loss against West Bromwich in the rear view. The Cherries will represent a tough opponent, but United will bounce back and secure a win here.
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