Manchester United vs Nottingham Forest Match Preview: Team News, Predictions and Where to Watch
Manchester United’s clash against Nottingham Forest kicks off at 3pm on Saturday 26th August with the home side looking to correct their mistakes and the away side looking to build further.
Manchester United’s opening games in the 2023/24 Premier League season have been underwhelming after a lacklustre 1-0 victory against Wolverhampton Wanderers and a 2-0 loss to Tottenham Hotspur.
The Red Devils are yet to go through the gears and really kickstart their season.
A Pape Sarr goal in the 49th minute and a Lisandro Martinez own goal saw United fall to a 2-0 defeat against the North London-based club.
Despite some positive signs in the first-half, the Red Devils failed to capitalise on their chances. Key men such as Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes are still yet to open their accounts for the season.
Erik ten Hag will be without new signing Mason Mount for Saturday’s game as the English international picked up an injury during the clash with Spurs.
This leaves the Dutchman looking towards either Scott McTominay or Christian Eriksen to fill his role.
The former Ajax manager will still have to deal with injuries to Tyrell Malacia, Amad Diallo and Kobbie Mainoo as all three are ruled out with injuries sustained during pre-season.
Rasmus Hojlund is still an injury doubt and there are no new updates on his fitness as of yet. There is a chance that he will make the substitutes bench.
The Red Devils played a behind-closed-doors friendly against Burnley on Tuesday and this provided crucial minutes for squad players such as Donny Van de Beek, Facundo Pellistri and Scott McTominay despite the 3-0 loss.
Anthony Elanga is returning to Old Trafford for the first time since his departure to Nottingham Forest. The Manchester United faithful will look forward to giving the Academy Graduate a warm welcome back.
Ten Hag will be hopeful that their game against Forest can prove to be a turning point for United’s season.
Predicted XI: Onana; Shaw, Varane, Martinez, Wan-Bissaka; Casemiro, Eriksen, Fernandes; Rashford, Sancho, Antony
Nottingham Forest come into game week three with a spring in their step. Having challenged Arsenal in a 2-1 loss in the opening game, Forest beat Sheffield United 2-1 to earn their first crucial points of the season.
Taiwo Awoniyi continued his six-game scoring streak with a goal in the third minute. Despite the Blades equalising through Gustavo Hamer in the 48th minute, substitute Chris Wood fired in a header in the 89th minute to secure all three points for the home side.
Nottingham Forest will be coming into this clash confident of causing an upset.
Steve Cooper will be without Wayne Hennessey, Felipe and Omar Richards who are all currently out with injuries.
Forest fans will be hopeful of another strong performance to continue their push to stay away from the relegation fight.
Predicted XI: Turner; Boly, McKenna, Worrall, Aurier, Aina; Mangala, Danilo; Johnson, Awoniyi, Gibbs-White
Can Forest Conquer Ten Hag’s Fortress?
Steve Cooper’s side will head to Old Trafford confident they can secure something from the game against United and Awoniyi will look to continue his scoring streak and upset the home crowd.
Erik ten Hag will be hoping goals are easier to come by against Forest after a poor start to the season overall particularly in midfield and attacking areas.
Injuries are only an increasing problem for the Dutchman’s side so Forest will look to take advantage of this weakened Manchester United side.
Despite United’s poor start to the season, they still enter the game as favourites. Forest will have to be at their best to get anything out of this game. Expect a hard-fought battle between the two sides
Score Prediction: Manchester United 2-1 Nottingham Forest
Where to watch: Unavailable in the UK due to the 3pm blackout rule.