Harry Maguire must be at his best to stop Everton's forwards when they meet at Goodison Park on Saturday. (Photo credit: Premierleague...
|Harry Maguire must be at his best to stop Everton's forwards when they meet at Goodison Park on Saturday. (Photo credit: Premierleague.com)|
Everton vs Manchester UnitedGoodison Park12:30pm
Strange as it may sound, there are real possibilities of Everton going down this season after yet another embarrassing loss in their rescheduled game in midweek against Burnley.
Frank Lampard was brought in to steady the ship and lift them out of the relegation zone but the former Chelsea star has only managed two wins in nine games, the last of these fixtures was against Burnley, a direct relegation rival.
Manchester United have a lifeline in their top four fight after Arsenal were pummeled at Crystal Palace on Monday night but the Red Devils still sit three points behind the Gunners on the log and have even played a game more than Arsenal.
A win over Everton in this fixture will take Manchester United to fifth, over Arsenal but they must win by at least three goals, it is possible if you consider how poor they are defensively at Everton, it’s indeed a game of two troubled teams.
Everton would wonder how they lost to the Clarets from a winning position on Wednesday, at some points, they were seven points clear of the relegation zone, but that was reduced to just one point after the final whistle, must be devastating to say the least.
In United’s 1-1 at Old Trafford against Leicester City, the Reds dominated the game on the average but as they have always managed this season, they bring their A-Game to just one half and disappear in the other, Leicester understood that and went hard against them in the second half.
How will both sides line up? Lampard must have studied United to understand that he has a chance if he goes at their defense fearlessly; Harry Maguire and Rafael Varane did well against the Foxes but the signs of fragility were still visible.
Everton only have on clean sheet since Lampard took over, they will surely concede and with Cristiano Ronaldo reported to be back in the squad, you can place your money on both teams to score.
Everton will deploy their wildcard – Dominic Calvert Lewin upfront, he doesn’t look the fittest but the desire to go for every ball is there for all to see. Richarlison scored twice from the penalty spot in midweek, there’s something in there as well but the Brazilian would be better for it if he calms down.
This is a must win game for Manchester United, but a loss for Everton and a win for Burnley at Norwich switches things up at the base, Everton would drop to the bottom three and the rise from there might never happen.
Verdict: United to win away