OCT. 20 (Sporting Alert) — Manchester United will look to move back into the top four of the English Premier League when they take on West Bromwich at The Hawthorns on Monday night.
United returns to action after a 15 day break for international duties and Louis van Gaal will be hoping his team can build on the back-to-back wins they picked up prior to the two week halt.
Captain Wayne Rooney is still out because of suspension, so Juan Mata is expected to continue playing in the number 10 role in support of Robin van Persie and Falcao.
The likes of Ander Herrera, Ashley Young, Michael Carrick, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling could all be available, but Jonny Evans, Paddy McNair, Antonio Valencia and Jesse Lingard are still out injured.
Manchester United dominated for the most part against Everton the last time out, but had to hold on for a 2-1 win at Old Trafford on the back of some outstanding saves by goalkeeper David de Gea.
Now Van Gaal is calling on his team to continue playing the same intensity football come Monday night, but also demanding a full 90 minutes at that high level.
“It is the game, the style, the formation and the philosophy that we have to judge and not the points,” the manager on www.manutd.com.
“The points are coming when we are playing well, and not only well for 60 minutes but for 90 minutes.
“They [the players] are coming back from the national teams and we had an evaluation about the last 30 minutes against Everton.
“We have to be professional, we have to evaluate and we have to improve. We have to learn from our faults. There is no psychological benefit from being in fourth.”
West Brom sits 15th in the EPL table standings on eight-points, but a victory on Monday would see them joining five other teams, including Man United, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur on 11 points.
Porto loanee Silvestre Varela, who underwent groin surgery and striker Victor Anichebe, battling with a hernia problem, will both miss Monday’s game.
Forward Brown Ideye is also out, but captain Chris Brunt, who is caring a groin problem he picked up with Northern Ireland, could be fit for The Baggies.
West Brom (squad): Daniels, Foster, Myhill, Baird, Davidson, Dawson, Gamboa, Lescott, McAuley, O’Neil, Olsson, Pocognoli, Wisdom, Blanco, Brunt, Dorrans, Gardner, Morrison, Mulumbu, Sessegnon, Roofe, Yacob, Anichebe, Berahino, Ideye, Nabi, Samaras.
Manchester United (squad): Amos, De Gea, Johnstone, Lindegaard, Blackett, Blind, Jones, Rafael, Rojo, Shaw, Smalling, Vermijl, Anderson, Carrick, Di Maria, Fellaini, Fletcher, Herrera, James, Januzaj, Mata, Young, Falcao, W Keane, Van Persie, Wilson.
Referee: Mike Dean Assistants: J Brooks, J Collin Fourth Official: M Atkinson