By Bulldog Drummond
I imagine that Petr Cech will play in goal, as that seems to be the arrangement and the player has to stay match fit as he is the backup for the rest of the season.
In defence we could use the back four approach although obviously we don’t have Hector Bellerin for the rest of the season.
Stephan Lichtsteiner has been looking less and less secure in my mind, so it would be obvious to play Ainsley Maitland-Niles in that position, and not push up from that side of the pitch.
We could have Monreal back, but much depends on whether the manager wants a solid and secure back four or whether he wants more rampaging up the left side of the Manchester United defence. If the latter then Sead Kolasinac is the obvious man, but in a game against a team doing as well as this at present the solidity of Monreal, with the instruction to stay exactly where he is, at full back, could be a good idea.
Laurent Koscielny and Sokratis both did well against Chelsea so I am not sure there is much reason to change them.
As for the men in the middle, if we look back to the Chelsea match, this also seemed to work well. I am not saying that the current Manchester United team is the same as Chelsea last weekend, but when it works, it is worth staying with it, to my mind.
So that would mean a triangle of Granit Xhaka, Lucas Torreira and Matteo Guendouzi.
But now is this a match for Ozil? Since I have no idea what is really going on with Mesut I can’t say, but I imagine that for the manager to play Ozil now he will have to have something in mind that is perfect for this game in terms of Ozil’s ability. And he will be saying, “Ok if you are ready, go out and do it and prove it to me. This is your chance.
The alternative of course is Ramsey who played excellently against Chelsea, and the question would then be why to move him. I can’t really see why one would so I would have Ramsey with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette starting together to keep the Manchester United team pushed back. They are hardly going to risk everything rushing forward with those two ready to make a break for it.
So Alex Iwobi, and Mesut Ozil will be on the beach. Who is there with them… well, a goalkeeper obvioiusly, but for the rest, I’ve got it wrong so often I’ve given up trying.
Maitland-Niles, Sokratis, Koscielny, Monreal
Xhaka, Torreira, Guendouzi
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