Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has some big decisions to make ahead of the first instalment of Friday night football in the Premier League this season.
The first comes in goal, with David de Gea likely to miss out once again. Van Gaal might shed some more light on the situation in his pre-match press conference on Thursday afternoon, but Sergio Romero is expected to keep his place against Aston Villa.
At the back, Matteo Darmian impressed on debut and will remain at right-back, whilst Chris Smalling and Daley Blind was an effective partnership in the absence of Phil Jones - who is still out with thrombosis. Marcos Rojo could slot in if required, but changing a winning formula seems unnecessary. Luke Shaw should also continue at left-back.
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Whilst Bastian Schweinsteiger looked accomplished when coming off the bench in the 1-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur, the pairing of Michael Carrick and Morgan Schneiderlin offers league experience on a potentially tricky evening away from home.
Ashley Young remains in favour with Van Gaal and should start in an advanced right position against his old club, whilst Juan Mata and Memphis Depay have the ability to interchange behind the striker and on the left flank.
Wayne Rooney remains the only realistic option in attack, with Javier Hernandez available off the bench, but if all players are available then it makes sense to stick with the same starting line-up that did the job against Spurs.
Manchester United predicted XI vs Aston Villa:
Romero; Darmian, Smalling, Blind, Shaw; Schneiderlin, Carrick; Young, Mata, Memphis; Rooney.
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