Chris Smalling

Combined XI: Manchester United vs. Paris Saint-Germain

Ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League showdown between Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain, Sports Mole selects its strongest combined XI from both squads. Manchester United host Paris Saint-Germain in a mouth-watering first leg of their Champions League last 16 tie on Tuesday night. The Red Devils have roared back to form under interim boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who has overseen 10 wins and a draw from his 11 matches at the helm so far. However, that unbeaten start will face its toughest test yet on Tuesday as the runaway Ligue 1 leaders PSG continue their bid to lift the Champions League for the first time. Here, Sports Mole selects its strongest combined XI, using only players available for Tuesday’s match. Gianluigi Buffon will rightly go down as one of the greatest goa...

Chris Smalling: ‘Manchester United lucky to have Paul Pogba’

Chris Smalling says that Manchester United are “very lucky” to have Paul Pogba, who continued his fine form against Fulham on Saturday. Chris Smalling has said that Manchester United are “very lucky” to have Paul Pogba in their team. Pogba has been in outstanding form for United since Jose Mourinho departed in December, with the Frenchman playing a key role in his team’s turnaround over the last couple of months. The 25-year-old has scored eight goals in his last nine Premier League appearances, while he has 13 goals and nine assists in 30 games for United in all competitions this term. The midfielder hit a brace in Saturday’s 3-0 win over Fulham, which led to Smalling paying tribute to his teammate. “He’s got everything hasn’t he! I th...

Manchester United players ‘convinced Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will stay’

Manchester United’s players are convinced that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be appointed the club’s long-term manager, according to a report. Manchester United‘s players are reportedly convinced that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be appointed the club’s long-term manager. Solskjaer replaced Jose Mourinho at the helm in December, and the Norwegian has led the Red Devils to nine wins and one draw from his first 10 games in charge. United are now within touching distance of the top four in the Premier League table, while they will enter next week’s last-16 Champions League first leg with Paris Saint-Germain full of confidence. Chris Smalling, Anthony Martial and Phil Jones have recently signed new contracts with the club, while it is thought that Ander Herrera, Ashley Y...

How Manchester United could line up against Burnley

Sports Mole looks at how Manchester United could line up for their Premier League clash with Burnley on Tuesday night. Burnley will become the latest team to attempt to stop Ole Gunnar Solskjaer‘s Manchester United when the Red Devils welcome the Clarets to Old Trafford on Tuesday night. Solskjaer has won eight games from eight in interim charge so far, the most recent of which saw United knock Arsenal out of the FA Cup on Friday night. Another victory on Tuesday would temporarily take United level on points with fourth-placed Chelsea – a prospect which looked highly unlikely just over a month ago. Here, Sports Mole looks at how Solskjaer could line his side up for the match. Out: Marouane Fellaini (calf), Marcos Rojo (other)Doubtful: Chris Smalling (foot) Chris Smalling is nea...

Preview: Manchester United vs. Burnley – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole brings you the team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Manchester United’s home Premier League clash with Burnley. Manchester United will be looking to make it nine straight wins under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer when they welcome Burnley to Old Trafford in the Premier League on Tuesday night. United have won each of their last eight matches, including six in the Premier League, to move to within three points of fourth-placed Chelsea in the table with a lot of football still to be played this season. Man United © Reuters Even in Solskjaer’s wildest dreams, surely the Norwegian would not have expected to be in this position when he replaced Jose Mourinho as head coach of United last month. Solskjaer was brought back to Old Trafford with the view to improving mora...

Combined XI: Arsenal vs. Manchester United

Sports Mole selects a combined XI from those expected to be available for Friday’s FA Cup meeting between Arsenal and Manchester United. The FA Cup‘s two most successful sides collide at the Emirates Stadium on Friday evening as Arsenal take on Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium. Only Arsenal (13) have lifted the famous cup on more occasions than United (12), with at least one of the sides reaching the final in each of the last five seasons. With the teams well out of the Premier League title race and seemingly competing for a top-four spot, the FA Cup has taken on added importance this season. Ahead of this latest high-profile tussle between the English heavyweights, Sports Mole selects the strongest combined XI from both teams using only the players expected to be avai...

How Manchester United could line up against Arsenal

Sports Mole looks at how Manchester United could line up for their FA Cup fourth-round tie against Arsenal. Manchester United head to Arsenal in round four of the FA Cup on Friday night aiming to maintain their winning run under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. The Red Devils have won seven games from seven since the Norwegian took over from Jose Mourinho last month, including a 2-0 victory over Reading in the third round. Next up for a rejuvenated United is a trip to the Emirates Stadium, as they come up against the only team to have won the competition more times than them. Here, Sports Mole looks at how Solskjaer may set out his side in North London. Out: Marouane Fellaini (calf), Marcos Rojo (knock), Chris Smalling (foot)Doubtful: Marcus Rashford (knee), Luke Shaw (illness) Solskjaer is unlikely ...

Marcos Rojo to leave Manchester United at end of season?

Marcos Rojo will reportedly be the first casualty of Manchester United’s plans to strengthen their defence. Manchester United are to get rid of Marcos Rojo in the summer as part of a defensive overhaul, according to a report. The Argentina international is a forgotten figure at Old Trafford, being used just three times in all competitions this season. Rojo left United’s training camp in Dubai early last week to return to his home country, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer giving the versatile defender a chance to clear his head. According to The Telegraph, the 28-year-old will be the first casualty of the Red Devils’ plans to strengthen their backline ahead of next season as he is considered the most expendable of the club’s five central defenders. The last of Rojo’s ...

Preview: Manchester United vs. Bournemouth – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews the final Premier League match of 2018 as Manchester United host Bournemouth at Old Trafford. Manchester United host Bournemouth in the final Premier League match of 2018 this Sunday looking to continue their recent revival. The Red Devils have won their last two matches since sacking Jose Mourinho, and take on a Bournemouth side coming off the back of a heavy 5-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur. Man Utd © Reuters It will take a bit more time to determine whether Manchester United’s recent improvement is more down to Mourinho’s exit or Ole Gunnar Solskjaer‘s own good work, but there has been a tangible change in the atmosphere at Old Trafford since the switch was made. United scored three or more goals on just two occasions in Mourinho’s final 23 le...

How Manchester United could line up against Huddersfield Town

Ahead of the Boxing Day clash between Manchester United and Huddersfield Town, Sports Mole looks at Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side could line up at Old Trafford. Manchester United play host to Huddersfield Town on Boxing Day with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer set to sit in the home dugout in a managerial capacity for the first time. Solskjaer replaced Jose Mourinho last weekend, and the Norwegian marked his arrival by guiding United to a 5-1 win at Cardiff City on Saturday evening. The result has left United eight points adrift of both Chelsea and Arsenal in the race for a Champions League spot at the end of the campaign. Solskjaer has a number of options available to him, and here Sports Mole looks at how his team could line up at Old Trafford. Out: Alexis Sanchez (thigh), Romelu Lukaku (compas...

Preview: Manchester United vs. Huddersfield Town – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of the Premier League clash between Manchester United and Huddersfield Town on Boxing Day. Manchester United play host to Huddersfield Town on Boxing Day having recorded a dominant 5-1 success over Cardiff City in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer‘s first game in charge. David Wagner‘s Huddersfield make the short trip to Old Trafford having suffered five successive defeats in the top flight. Manchester United © Reuters Solskjaer was successful in getting his United stint off to the perfect start on Saturday, but the adulation which greeted the victory in South Wales further highlighted the downturn which United have taken under Jose Mourinho. Much has been made of the board’s decision to hand the reins to someone who...

Preview: Cardiff City vs. Manchester United – prediction, team news lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday’s Premier League clash between Cardiff City and Manchester United, the latter of whom begin life after Jose Mourinho in South Wales. Manchester United‘s post-Jose Mourinho era begins in South Wales on Saturday afternoon when they take on relegation-threatened Cardiff City in the day’s late Premier League kickoff. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will begin his interim spell as Red Devils manager against the club he suffered relegation with during his only previous managerial stint in the English leagues. Cardiff © Reuters Not many column inches will be dedicated to Cardiff in the buildup to this match following the seismic events at Old Trafford this week, but that will suit the Bluebirds just fine. While the rest of the football world was digesting the ...

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