Manchester United head to Premier League newcomers Burnley on Saturday night in desperate need of three points.
The Red Devils were comprehensively outplayed by Brighton & Hove Albion at Old Trafford in their last league outing, with the midweek Champions League defeat to Bayern Munich only adding to Erik ten Hag’s woes.
United are shipping goals for fun currently, making life particularly difficult for new goalkeeper Andre Onana, who is under pressure after a glaring handling error gifted Leroy Sane the opening goal in Munich.
Off-field issues involving Jadon Sancho and Ten Hag continue to dominate the headlines too, and the England winger will again be missing from the squad when United travel to Turf Moor to take on Vincent Kompany’s Burnley.
Sancho is one of a number of prominent players missing for United, with injuries robbing Ten Hag of his strongest possible XI.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka will be missing for United / Michael Regan/GettyImages
United will again be without Luke Shaw, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Tyrell Malacia, leaving United little alternative but to play Diogo Dalot and Sergio Reguilon against Burnley.
They have been joined on the sidelines in recent weeks by Raphael Varane, Mason Mount and Sofyan Amrabat – the latter of whom is yet to make his United debut after joining from Fiorentina on loan.
Harry Maguire was also absent from United’s squad for the 4-3 defeat to Bayern Munich, but he could play some part on Saturday after training on Friday afternoon.
Antony, Amad Diallo and Kobbie Mainoo are also unavailable.
Raphael Varane could return in central defence / Michael Regan/GettyImages
“Maybe, as you say, Harry Maguire,” replied Ten Hag. “We will see better after training [on Friday afternoon]. But Varane will train and we will see. Amrabat, he will train and we will see. Mount, as well, but they all didn’t play for a short or longer term.”
Those were the cautious words of Ten Hag during his pre-match press conference in regards to who might return for United. A return for Varane would be a huge boost for United, potentially replacing Victor Lindelof to slot in alongside Lisandro Martinez, but there’s no guarantee that Ten Hag will take the risk with some hugely important fixtures coming up.
Sofyan Amrabat may be fit enough to play some minutes from the bench but the Moroccan won’t be thrust into the action from the off.
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