Manchester United host fierce rivals Liverpool on Sunday and the one-v-one battle between Luke Shaw and Mohamed Salah could have a huge bearing on the game.
He may play for Jurgen Klopp’s side, but credit where credits due, the Egyptian looks unplayable at the moment.
But our left-back is going to have to rise to the challenge and nullify the huge threat the 29-year-old will bring.
The last thing we want is Shaw, who already has three yellow cards to his name this season, getting an early booking and not being able to lay a glove on Salah for the rest of the game.
Shaw is going to have to strike the balance between being aggressive and respectful to Salah because the form he is in at the moment, he will punish any mistake we make.
No bigger challenge for Shaw than Salah
Shaw has the physicality to impose himself on Salah, but he will also have to deal with an attack-minded Trent Alexander-Arnold over-lapping Salah.
The England left-back is going to need help, and if Marcus Rashford is passed fit following his dead leg against Atalanta, the duo are going to have to work in tandem to combat the threat of Salah and TAA.
It will be the same for Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Mason Greenwood down our right when they come up against Andy Robertson and Sadio Mane.
The best case scenario for Shaw is that we dominate possession and pin Liverpool back all game, forcing Salah to run the other way and track Shaw’s marauding runs forward.
But we’re not going to have it all our own way against Klopp’s men, far from it, there will be times when Shaw is isolated one-v-one against Salah and he will have to stay defensively disciplined and ensure he follows the former Chelsea man’s darts across the defence.
Salah has only failed to score in one Liverpool game this season, he has 12 goals from 11 games to go alongside four assists, and is probably one of the most in-form players in world football currently.
The forward has three goals from his last two trips to Old Trafford, so Shaw is coming up against a player at the peak of his powers with confidence sky high.
Shaw’s form has been a bit up and down following his incredible European Championships.
The 26-year-old cannot afford to have an up and down performance against Salah otherwise that will spell trouble.
The match on Sunday is stacked with individual battles, but Shaw versus Salah could be the crucial one.
We need Shaw to bring his A-game to what will be an electric Theatre of Dreams, if he does and Liverpool see their main man being kept out of the game, they could become rattled.
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