Manchester United welcome Watford in Solskjaer’s first game as permanent manager


Following the announcement of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s three year contract to become the permanent Manchester United manager, there is no denying a certain buzz is around Old Trafford. One that has not been felt since the Sir Alex Ferguson days. Despite two consecutive defeats on the road at Arsenal and Wolves, United should be confident heading into the must win fixture against Watford.

The end of the international break represents a crucial time in the season for the Red Devils. The race for Champions League football is certainly on with United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham all battling for just two positions. Any points dropped between now and the end of the season could prove crucial as the battle for the top four looks set to go down to the wire.

Meanwhile, after their famous night in Paris, United are also in the quarter final stages of the Champions League where they face the daunting task of travelling to the Nou Camp to face Lionel Messi and the rest of a supremely talented Barcelona side.

With eight matches in the next month, different sets of challenges are coming thick and fast for this United side. The news of Solskjaer’s appointment could provide a much needed boost in the lead up to a busy end of the season.

Related image

Chris Smalling’s strike was enough for Man United to edge out Watford in a 2-1 win in the reverse fixture – Image: 90 Min

For the visitors Watford, Javi Gracia is perhaps flying under the radar as a potential candidate of manager of the year. For the club that is well known for it’s ruthless sackings and continual instability, the Spaniard has brought an air of calmness to proceedings at Vicarage Road. Currently sat in 8th place and one point of 7th, the Hornets will surely have an eye on breaking into one of the Europa League spots to cap off a terrific season.

Team News:

Despite a number of absentees out injured for their national sides during the break, Manchester Untied welcome a host of players back into the fold for the match on Saturday. The likes of Luke Shaw, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard have all recovered from knocks and are set to feature. However, Romelu Lukaku is the only potential doubt as he continues his rehabilitation from a foot injury. Alexis Sanchez is still sidelined with a knee ligament injury forcing to remain sidelined until late April.

Javi Gracia almost has a full bill of health in his squad as he looks to upset the hosts. Full back Jose Holebas returns after sustaining an ankle injury in their FA Cup match against Crystal Palace prior to the international break. Tom Cleverley is the out of the clash against his former club with a calf injury.

Watford make the trip to Manchester in a Saturday 15.00 GMT kick off.


About Author

Football, Boxing and Cricket correspondent from Hampshire, covering southern sport. Editor and Head of Boxing at Prost International. Accreditated EFL & EPL journalist.

Comments are closed.