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How Manchester United could line up against Southampton

How Manchester United could line up against Southampton

Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to return to the Manchester United lineup when the Red Devils welcome Southampton to Old Trafford for Saturday lunchtime’s Premier League encounter.

The 37-year-old was named among the substitutes by Ralf Rangnick in midweek – a decision which did not pay dividends as Burnley held United to a 1-1 draw – but he ought to lead the line in front of the Old Trafford crowd.

Fred and Alex Telles remain doubts after testing positive for COVID-19 before the FA Cup defeat to Middlesbrough, while centre-back Eric Bailly is yet to shake off an ankle problem sustained during the Africa Cup of Nations.

Harry Maguire‘s shaky performance in midweek may lead Rangnick to consider a recall for Victor Lindelof, but the England international should keep his place as part of an unchanged backline.

Even if Fred is fit enough to play a part on Saturday, the Brazilian cannot expect to displace Scott McTominay or Paul Pogba – the latter of whom broke the deadlock in style at Turf Moor.

With Ronaldo sure to come back in and operate at the forefront of the attack, Edinson Cavani is likely to make way as Bruno Fernandes prepares to feed his compatriot.

Another alteration in the final third could take place out wide, with Anthony Elanga hopeful of a return to the first XI over Marcus Rashford or Jadon Sancho.

Man United possible starting lineup: De Gea; Dalot, Varane, Maguire, Shaw; Pogba, McTominay; Sancho, Fernandes, Elanga; Ronaldo

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