Here is how Manchester United and West Ham United will line up for this afternoon’s match at Old Trafford…
Manchester United starting XI: De Gea; Rafael, McNair, Rojo, Shaw; Blind, Herrera, Di Maria, Rooney; van Persie, Falcao
Subs: Lindegaard, Thorpe, Fletcher, Pereira, Valencia, Mata, Januzaj
West Ham United starting XI: Adrian; Demel, Reid, Tomkins, Cresswell; Downing, Song, Poyet, Amalfitano; Sakho, Valencia
Subs: Jaaskelainen, Nolan, Zarate, Vaz Te, Jenkinson, Collins, Cole
Manchester United return to Old Trafford today in search of a bounce back win after last weekend’s shock 5-3 loss to Leicester City.
The Red Devils led 3-1 at King Power Stadium on Sunday, only to concede four goals in 20 minutes as the Foxes ran riot against a flimsy United defence. Manager Louis van Gaal is already under increasing pressure as his United side struggle to improve under his stewardship, and they face a potential banana skin against West Ham United today.
Van Gaal has handed a shock start to Northern Irish youngster Patrick McNair, with the 19-year-old featuring at centre back alongside Marcos Rojo. Luke Shaw returns at left back, whilst Wayne Rooney plays behind Robin van Persie and Radamel Falcao despite some fans calling for Juan Mata to play.
The Hammers notched a 3-1 win over Liverpool last weekend, and Sam Allardyce will be confident that his side can build on that victory against another so-called ‘big side’. The Hammers can call upon the impressive strike duo of Diafra Sakho and Enner Valencia, whilst it appears that ‘Big Sam’ has gone back to 4-4-2 with Stewart Downing and Morgan Amalfitano on the flanks.
Allardyce has also handed the captaincy to new signing Alex Song, who is partnered in the centre of midfield by Diego Poyet – the son of Sunderland manager Gus – with the Uruguayan picked ahead of Kevin Nolan in midfield.