Manchester United

The Lowdown: City's Next Premier League Opponents, Manchester United

Leicester City go head-to-head with UEFA Europa League finalists Manchester United in the Premier League on Tuesday evening (6pm kick-off).

The two sides will meet for the third time this season when they face off at Old Trafford, with the Foxes unbeaten in both previous encounters in the top flight and Emirates FA Cup.

Ahead of the latest clash between two of the Premier League's top four, looks at how United's squad, manager and recent form shapes up...

The team

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Paul Pogba
Paul Pogba

France midfielder Paul Pogba is one of many established international names within the Manchester United squad.

Manchester United’s star-studded squad contains 2018 FIFA World Cup winner Paul Pogba and Spain goalkeeper David de Gea, among others, and includes several supremely talented youngsters.

The Red Devils also possess a wealth of English international experience, including attackers Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood, and former Fox Harry Maguire, who is now club captain.

The team's excellent campaign to date has been spearheaded by the goalscoring prowess of Rashford and summer signing Edison Cavani, alongside Anthony Martial and emerging midfield talent Scott McTominay.

United's top goalscorer, however, is Portuguese playmaker Bruno Fernandes, who has also registered more assists than any other United player, while Brazilian defender Alex Telles has also made an impact since joining from FC Porto for a reported £13.5M, despite the impressive form of England left-back Luke Shaw.

Dutch midfielder Donny van de Beek, on the other hand, highly rated during his time at Ajax, is yet to break through to the starting XI since his reported £35M move from the Amsterdam club.

The manager

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Ole Gunnar Solskjær
Ole Gunnar Solskjær

The Norwegian won a host of major honours during his time as a Manchester United player.

Ole Gunnar Solskjær was named as permanent Manchester United manager in March 2019 after taking over as a caretaker following José Mourinho’s departure in December 2018.

Solskjær’s first 19 games saw him record a stunning 14 victories and two draws, winning his first eight matches in charge and registering more points than any other team during that period.

An iconic striker for the Red Devils across an 11-year period, he netted 126 goals in 366 appearances under the management of Sir Alex Ferguson, who oversaw a trophy-laden 27-year spell in Manchester, and Solskjær famously scored an injury-time winner in the UEFA Champions League Final against Bayern Munich, after coming off the bench to help United win the treble in 1999.

Another memorable appearance from the substitutes' bench saw him score four times in 12 minutes as United beat Nottingham Forest 8-1 in February 1999, which was the largest away win in the history of the Premier League until Leicester City's 9-0 victory at Southampton 20 years later. He also starred on 67 occasions for Norway, netting 23 goals for his country.

Solskjær retired in 2007 and coached United's reserve team until 2010 before two separate spells at Norwegian club Molde – either side of nine months at Cardiff City – led to him winning two league titles and the Norwegian Football Cup.

Initially taking over at Old Trafford on a temporary basis in 2019, the 47-year-old then agreed a three-year-deal to become permanent manager. He won two of his remaining 10 fixtures in 2018/19 to seal a sixth-placed finish.

In 2019/20, however, Solskjær's side finished third in the table to secure a UEFA Champions League return, though they were 33 points adrift of champions Liverpool.

The Norwegian also guided the Red Devils to semi-finals in the Emirates FA Cup, Carabao Cup and UEFA Europa League, before last four exits in all three competitions. This term, though, United will meet Villarreal in the Europa League Final later this summer. 

Form guide

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Mason Greenwood
Mason Greenwood

Mason Greenwood was on target during a 6-2 victory over AS Roma in the UEFA Europa League Semi-Final first leg.

Manchester United's impressive season has been marked by results in key games such as the derby victory over league leaders Manchester City in early March. Solskjær's side triumphed 2-0 at Etihad Stadium thanks to goals in each half from Bruno Fernandes and Luke Shaw.

In February, United hit Southampton 9-0 at Old Trafford to equal their own Premier League record for the biggest margin of victory - which is also shared by Leicester, who beat the Saints by the same scoreline in October 2019.

In the FA Cup, meanwhile, United progressed into the quarter-finals by beating Watford (1-0), Liverpool (3-2) and West Ham United (1-0), before a 3-1 defeat to Leicester in the last eight.

Solskjær's side have also reached the Europa League Final after a two-legged last four tie with AS Roma. The Manchester club are bidding to win the competition for the second time in four years.

Previous encounters

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Kelechi Iheanacho
Kelechi Iheanacho

Iheanacho celebrates the first of his two goals in the recent Emirates FA Cup success against United.

The two sides played out an entertaining 2-2 draw in the league fixture held at King Power Stadium on Boxing Day 2020. The visitors twice went ahead via goals from Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes, though the Foxes fought back through Harvey Barnes' effort and a late own goal from Axel Tuanzebe.

The Foxes also secured a memorable Emirates FA Cup Quarter-Final triumph over the Red Devils in March. A brace from Kelechi Iheanacho and Youri Tielemans' strike sent City into the last four of the competition.

United came out on top in both Premier League clashes last season, however, winning 1-0 at Old Trafford on 14 September, 2019, courtesy of Rashford's early penalty. The reverse fixture, which was the final game of the 2019/20 campaign, ended 2-0 and confirmed the Red Devils' place in the top four.

A more memorable fixture at home to the Red Devils was the 5-3 victory for Nigel Pearson's newly-promoted side in September 2014, which included Jamie Vardy's first-ever Premier League goal and strikes from David Nugent, Esteban Cambiasso and Leonardo Ulloa (2). 

The trophy cabinet

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Manchester United 2013
Manchester United 2013

The Red Devils won the last of their 13 Premier League titles in 2013.

Manchester United’s unprecedented Premier League success has seen them crowned champions of England on 13 occasions since the league’s reformation in 1992, and 20 times in total.

They have also won 12 FA Cups, with their latest coming in 2015/16 to set up a Community Shield clash with Leicester City at Wembley Stadium in 2016, and five League Cups.

On the European front, Man Utd have won three UEFA Champions League trophies, with the last coming in 2008 when they beat Chelsea on penalties in Moscow. They also won the UEFA Europa League in 2017, when they beat Ajax 2-0 in Stockholm, thanks to goals from Paul Pogba and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

Alongside their memorable 1999 treble victory, they have won the domestic double a further two times – in 1994 and 1996 – and have won two European doubles, including their 2008 Premier League and Champions League triumph.

The stadium

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Old Trafford
Old Trafford

United's 111-year-old home is currently the largest stadium in the Premier League.

Old Trafford, holding 75,000 seats, is the second-largest football stadium in England, with only Wembley Stadium boasting a higher capacity.

Manchester United’s home since 1910, Old Trafford was nicknamed ‘The Theatre Of Dreams’ by legendary Red Devils forward Sir Bobby Charlton, who in 2016 saw the south stand named in his honour.

The north stand, meanwhile, is named after the most successful manager of all time, Sir Alex Ferguson, who over a 27-year period won 38 trophies, including 13 Premier League titles.

In 2016, the Foxes secured a 1-1 draw in Manchester, which following a 2-2 draw between Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, was enough to see them crowned as Premier League champions.

The fixtures

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Harry Maguire
Harry Maguire

The Foxes could come up against former defender and current United captain Harry Maguire once more on Tuesday evening.

After welcoming Leicester to Old Trafford, United will face Liverpool in a rearranged fixture on Thursday 13 May (8:15pm kick-off), ahead of a third consecutive home game, against Fulham, on Tuesday 18 May (8pm kick-off).

The Premier League season will conclude with a trip to Molineux Stadium to tackle Wolverhampton Wanderers on Sunday 23 May (4pm kick-off). They then meet Villarreal on 26 May in the final of the UEFA Europa League (8pm kick-off).

All times BST.

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