Manchester United may need another super show from young star Mason Greenwood at Old Trafford tonight.
Greenwood took his goal tally for the season up to 16 earlier this month, with a burst of four strikes in three matches.
But the triple-header of matches last week did not go to plan, and there are questions over Greenwood’s fitness.
Scythed down by a ‘Saint’
United struggled tactically against Southampton and found it hard to give Greenwood good service.
The United forward was then hacked down by Oriol Romeu with a late challenge which deserved a red card.
Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admitted Greenwood suffered an injured ankle from the challenge and stated he was a doubt for the Crystal Palace game.
Greenwood did make the Palace match, but he was not at his sharpest. When he did get a chance, he uncharacteristically snatched at it. It was no surprise to see him substituted early.
Perhaps recognising the 18-year-old needed a rest, Solskjaer left Greenwood out at Wembley on Saturday in the FA Cup semi-final.
Greenwood was brought on late on, but did not make an impact with United already trailing.
What does he have left in the tank?
With just a combined 90 minutes played across the last two games instead of 180, Greenwood has had a little rest by recent standards.
If the plan was to conserve his energy and fitness for this important game with West Ham, then we should see the benefits this evening.
But that all depends on the combination of whether any short term damage was done to Greenwood’s ankle, if he is playing through pain, or if he has shaken it off completely.
Add in the factor of fatigue from playing in nine first team games in a month between the league restart and the semi-final, and Greenwood is being tested like never before.
This is a big challenge for him, and one he will need to get used to as a first team regular.
There are two crucial games now in the five days and Greenwood and United need one last push.
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