Venue: Old Trafford
Kick-off: 19:45 (BST)
Aston Villa welcome Manchester United to Villa Park on Friday night and the match should be an interesting encounter between two teams who started off their respective campaigns with a victory.
While all the talk had been surrounding Bournemouth’s fairy tale ahead of their first ever Premier League match, Villa played party poopers by claiming a 1-0 victory with a late goal from new signing Rudy Gestede.
The victory means that Villa have been handed a very good start to their campaign and manager Tim Sherwood will hope to build on it when Manchester United pay a visit to Villa Park on Friday.
Even Manchester United managed to begin their campaign with a 1-0 victory over Tottenham Hotspur but the performance was not exactly vintage United, especially given their summer splurge on new players.
United now prepare to square off against Aston Villa on Friday night and the match should prove to be another tough encounter for Louis van Gaal’s side.
Brad Guzan started in goal for Aston Villa ahead of new signing Mark Bunn and the American international should retain his place for the clash against Manchester United, following his impressive performance last week.
Along with Guzan, the likes of Leandro Bacuna, Micah Ricahrds, Ciaran Clark and Jordan Amavi also performed well in the backline and Sherwood will probably not think about changing the combination for Friday night.
In midfield Jordan Veretout, Ashley Westwood and Idrissa Gueye should start once again while Gabriel Agbonlahor and Scott Sinclair look likely to be starting on the wide attacking positions.
Jordan Ayew led the line against Bournemouth but following Rudy Gestede’s winning goal last time out, the Benin international looks likely to be handed the start.
Given the uncertainty surrounding the future of David De Gea, Sergio Romero was handed a start in goal last week and following his fine performance, the Argentine international should once again be the man between the sticks.
United’s backline consisting of Matteo Darmian, Daley Blind, Chris Smalling and Luke Shaw were also very impressive and van Gaal will probably not think about changing things around too much in his backline.
As for midfield, United look a bit rusty but Morgan Schneiderlin and Michael Carrick should be handed another chance to strike up a partnership while Bastian Schweinsteiger also will be in contention following his appearance from the bench last time out.
In the attacking positions, Juan Mata, Ashley Young and Memphis Depay look the most likely combination while Wayne Rooney will once again be leading the line up on his own.
Aston Villa (Probable XI): Guzan; Amavi, Clark, Richards, Bacuna; Gueye, Westwood, Veretout; Sinclair, Gestede, Agbonlahor
Manchester United (Probable XI): Romero; Shaw, Blind, Smalling, Darmian; Mata, Schneiderlin, Carrick, Young; Depay; Rooney
4/04/2015 Manchester United 3 – 1 Aston Villa
20/12/2014 Aston Villa 1 – 1 Manchester United
Aston Villa do not enjoy the best of records against Manchester United, having failed to defeat the Red Devils in their last 13 meetings.
Villa managed a 1-1 draw against United during their last meeting at Villa Park and it was the best result the Villans have earned against the Red Devils for nearly five years. Therefore, it would be fair to state that United head into the clash on Friday as favourites.
That said though, past records count for very little during the early stages of the Premier League campaign and Villa most certainly will head into the clash hoping to put the record straight.
The match will be an entertaining one and while Villa should be able to put up a good fight in front of their own fans, United look strong enough to be able to claim a victory on the night.
Aston Villa 1 – 2 Manchester United