After a decent 1-1 draw against Liverpool the last time out, now Manchester United will shift their focus towards the UEFA Europa League. The Red Devils are undefeated so far in Europe this season and will aim to extend that run when they visit Partizan Belgrade this Thursday at Partizan Stadium. Both sides will be vying for the top spot in Group L here. Kick-off for this match has been listed at 17:55 BST.
Manchester United won’t have two key players available for this game, as Paul Pogba is out with an ankle problem and David De Gea will also miss this contest despite playing against Liverpool this past weekend. Axel Tuanzebe, Luke Shaw and Nemanja Matic have been ruled out as well. Eric Bailly remains a long-term absentee, but Jesse Lingard should be back in action after missing United’s last two matches. Youngsters Ethan Laird and Matej Kovar have also been included on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s 20-man squad.
On the other hand, Partizan do not have any injury concerns ahead of this match. They have a number of players with Premier League experience in the current squad, including former Manchester United winger Zoran Tosic. AS Roma loanee Umar Sadiq and former Liverpool winger Lazar Markovic are two other names to watch on the Serbian side.
What is Manchester United’s travelling squad for this game?
Sergio Romero, Lee Grant, Matej Kovar; Phil Jones, Ethan Laird, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Marcos Rojo, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Brandon Williams; Fred, James Garner, Daniel James, Jesse Lingard, Scott McTominay, Juan Mata, Andreas Pereira; Mason Greenwood, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford.
Manchester United have been extremely inconsistent so far this season. They own a W2, D4, L3 mark in the Premier League but should enter this game with a morale boost under their belts following the 1-1 draw against Liverpool the last time out. They remain undefeated in UEFA Europa League play, though, mustering one win and one draw following previous matches against FK Astana and at AZ Alkmaar. The Red Devils are yet to concede a goal in Europe this season.
Meanwhile, Partizan have also had a disappointing domestic season – at least by their own standards. They sit in fifth place of the standings thanks to a W7, D2, L2 mark so far in 2019/20. They have been far better in the UEFA Europa League, though. As things stand right now, Partizan top the Group L standings thanks to their superior goalscoring record over United’s despite having the same form (W1, D1). They secured a 2-2 draw against AZ Alkmaar, and recorded an impressive 2-1 away win at Astana the last time out.
What is our previous all-time record against Partizan?
Manchester United and Partizan have placed twice in the past. The H2H record shows one win for each side, but history is deeper than that. These two clubs met in the 1966 European Cup semi-finals. Partizan won 2-0 at home, and Manchester United won 1-0 at Old Trafford. Therefore, the former Yugoslavian club reached the final, where they lost 2-1 against Real Madrid.
Manchester United will miss two important players ahead of this game. Plus, they have not been playing at a very high level in recent weeks. However, Partizan shouldn’t represent a big challenge. Even though the Serbian giants have looked good in the UEFA Europa League thus far, they have not faced an opponent nowhere close to Manchester United in terms of quality. All signs point towards a tight affair, but The Red Devils should be able to secure the three points in this one.