Predicted Manchester United line-up v Newcastle

Old Trafford will be a cauldron of noise of Saturday as Manchester United take on Newcastle.

In case you have been on the moon for the past fortnight, this game is set to become remembered for the re-introduction of Cristiano Ronaldo.

So will Ronaldo start? In a simple word, ‘yes’. The fans want to see Ronaldo, and the fans will get Ronaldo.

United’s last match at Old Trafford was the 5-1 win over Leeds and a similar scoreline is not beyond Solskjaer’s side this weekend.

Photo by Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images


Who is available for the fixture?

United’s injuries are clearing up, with Alex Telles and Scott McTominay both returning to training. But this game could be too soon for both. Marcus Rashford is still out.

The big news is Fred’s suspension, due to FIFA invoking a ban at Brazil’s request after United refused to release him for the World Cup qualifiers.

Uruguay did not request the same ban, so Edinson Cavani remains available for selection.

Ronaldo is eligible to make his debut after training earlier this week and completing his quarantine.

Key decisions

David de Gea will start in goal and the back four should pick itself. Raphael Varane and Harry Maguire should get the chance to try and continue to build their partnership.

The midfield is the biggest issue for United to solve, with Fred out. This opening could provide the opening Donny van de Beek desperately needs.

There is a chance United go with Nemanja Matic instead, but we are predicting Solskjaer selects both players.

The partnership of Matic and Van de Beek performed effectively together as United beat Everton 4-0 in pre-season. This should give Solskjaer confidence to go with the pair.

Paul Pogba can also drop back into help from the left-wing position in which he played so effectively in the season opener against Leeds.

Ronaldo is likely to start up front with support from Mason Greenwood on the right, with Bruno Fernandes in support. This is a team capable of scoring a hatful and we are predicting a comfortable victory.

Four questions Solskjaer will be debating

With an away Champions League game on Tuesday night, several decisions are not cut and dry.

  • Should United show faith in Edinson Cavani, who skipped the international break, and start him up front with Ronaldo coming off the bench for half an hour to a rapturous reception?
  • Is there a case to start an attack minded full-back, Diogo Dalot, in this fixture?
  • Could this be an ideal opportunity to mix in Jesse Lingard from the start to rest Bruno Fernandes for Tuesday’s game?
  • Paul Pogba played all three international matches and may benefit from a rest, if he is fit, should Jadon Sancho get the nod to start on the left?

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