Two goals in two games at Villa Park: Rangnick has to start Greenwood

Manchester United travel to Villa Park on Saturday to face Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa for the second time in the space of six days.

Ralf Rangnick’s Reds had to produce a dogged performance to overcome the Villains 1-0 in Monday night’s FA Cup tie.

Progression to the fourth round was secured, but Gerrard will be targeting revenge in the Premier League clash.

Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images

Buoyed by the glamorous signing of Phillipe Coutinho and the imminent arrival of Lucas Digne, United will have to produce another battling display to ensure we oust Gerrard yet again.


Since returning to the top-flight, Villa have lost both of their Premier League clashes against United at Villa Park.

Alongside Bruno Fernandes, Mason Greenwood is the other Manchester United player to score in both of those games.

Rangnick needs to place greater trust in Greenwood in PL

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Under Villa’s predecessor Dean Smith, United hit the Midlanders on the counter attack to devastating effect in our last two meetings at Villa Park.

But with Gerrard at the helm, Villa don’t look as vulnerable at the back and play with a greater intensity out of possession.

On Monday night, United played with greater width and had both Marcus Rashford and Greenwood hugging the touchlines.

Unlike Rashford, who is arguably going through the most challenging spell of his career, Greenwood carried a constant threat and there were no times where his shoulders slumped.

Photo by Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images

Aside from the Champions League dead rubber against Young Boys last month, Greenwood completed the 90 minutes for just the second time under Rangnick against Villa.

He was brought off on the hour mark in the defeat to Wolves much to the dismay of the Old Trafford faithful. Rangnick explained that it was either Greenwood or Edinson Cavani who would be substituted, and he opted to go with the Englishman.

Greenwood hasn’t completed the 90 minutes in a Premier League since the first weekend in October. His last goal in the top-flight came two weeks later where he scored a thunderbolt to open the scoring in the 4-2 defeat to Leicester.

But with Rashford’s worrying form showing no signs of ending and Jadon Sancho struggling for consistency, Rangnick needs to have greater faith in Greenwood.

Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images

There were times on Monday night where he skipped past Matt Targett like the defender wasn’t there. He was a constant threat and he may have had a tap-in if Rashford had chosen the right decision.

Greenwood has fond memories of Villa Park and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him make it three goals in three appearances at the stadium, if Rangnick names him in his starting line-up.

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Passionate Football fan that completed a NCTJ-accredited Diploma in Multimedia Sports Journalism in 2016.