XI

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...

Combined XI: Barcelona vs. Real Madrid

Sports Mole selects a combined XI ahead of Barcelona’s Copa del Rey clash with Real Madrid, using only players available for Wednesday’s clash. Barcelona will welcome Real Madrid to Camp Nou on Wednesday night for the first leg of their Copa del Rey semi-final. Barca have won the competition in each of the last four years and have been present in all but one of the last eight finals. The Spanish champions will enter the match off the back of a 2-2 draw with Valencia in the league on Saturday, while Madrid continued their impressive run of form with a 3-0 home success over Alaves. Both teams have some injury concerns heading into the match, but some of the world’s biggest stars will be on display at Camp Nou. Here, Sports Mole has selected the best team from both squads, u...

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...

Combined XI: Chelsea vs. Tottenham Hotspur

Ahead of Thursday’s EFL Cup semi-final between Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, Sports Mole selects a strongest combined XI from the two squads. Tottenham Hotspur make the short trip to face Chelsea in the second leg of their EFL Cup semi-final having already moved closer to an appearance in the final. A first-half penalty from Harry Kane earned Spurs a 1-0 victory at Wembley Stadium earlier this month, and Mauricio Pochettino is effectively just two wins away from lifting the club’s first trophy since 2008. Pochettino’s opposite number Maurizio Sarri finds himself in a similar position having never won silverware as the senior man in the dugout, but the Italian has claimed in the media that he is struggling to get the best out of his talented squad. Here, Sports Mole selec...

Combined XI: Liverpool vs. Arsenal

Ahead of Saturday’s Premier League clash between Liverpool and Arsenal, Sports Mole selects a strongest combined XI from the two squads. The final round of Premier League matches in 2018 contains a top-five battle on Saturday as unbeaten league leaders Liverpool host Arsenal at Anfield. Results have fallen very kindly for Jurgen Klopp‘s side over the Christmas period, leaving them six points clear at the top of the table halfway through the season. However, Arsenal are one of only three teams they have failed to beat so far this season and the Gunners will be looking to bounce back from a run of just one win in four games. Here, Sports Mole selects its strongest combined XI from both squads, using only players available for this weekend’s match. Liverpool boast the best d...

Combined XI: Liverpool vs. Manchester United

Ahead of Sunday’s Premier League showdown between Liverpool and Manchester United, Sports Mole selects its combined XI from both squads. English football’s biggest rivalry will enter its latest chapter on Sunday when Liverpool welcome Manchester United to Anfield. The Reds know that victory will take them back to the top of the table, while they are also currently on their joint-longest unbeaten run in the Premier League era and so could make another slice of history this weekend. However, for all of their success this season it is now eight matches since they beat United in the league and Jose Mourinho would relish the chance to dent Liverpool’s title hopes in their own back yard. Here, Sports Mole selects its combined XI from the two squads, using only players available...

Combined XI: Chelsea vs. Manchester City

Ahead of Saturday’s Premier League showdown between Chelsea and Manchester City, Sports Mole selects a combined XI from the two star-studded squads. The big matches continue to come thick and fast in December, and this weekend it is the turn of Chelsea and Manchester City to do battle at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea looked like possible title challengers a few short weeks ago, but a dip in form coupled with Man City’s relentless run of victories means that a 10-point gap now separates the two sides. Maurizio Sarri‘s side are still unbeaten at home this season, though, and know that they could claw themselves back into a potential title race by inflicting a first defeat of the campaign on Pep Guardiola‘s men. Here, Sports Mole selects a combined XI from both squads, usin...

Everton team news: Predicted XI vs. Liverpool

Sports Mole looks at how Everton could line up for Sunday’s Merseyside derby with Liverpool as they look to end a record-breaking winless run against their neighbours. Everton will be looking to end a 19-year wait for victory at Anfield when they take on neighbours Liverpool in the 232nd Merseyside derby on Sunday. The Toffees have not won an away derby since 1999 and are without a win of any kind in this fixture since 2010 – a 17-match run which is their longest ever spell without victory against Liverpool. Marco Silva could become the first Everton manager in history to win his first Merseyside derby at Anfield, and he will be buoyed by a recent run of form which has seen his side lose just one of their last seven league games. Here, Sports Mole looks at how he could set Ever...

Liverpool team news: Predicted XI vs. Everton

Sports Mole looks at how Liverpool could line up for Sunday’s Merseyside derby against Everton as captain Jordan Henderson misses the game through suspension. Liverpool will try to put their Champions League worries behind them this Sunday when they welcome neighbours Everton to Anfield for the 232nd Merseyside derby. The Reds are still unbeaten in the Premier League this season and go into the weekend sitting only two points adrift of leaders Manchester City. Liverpool are also enjoying their longest ever unbeaten streak against Everton and have not lost a home Merseyside derby since 1999, but Everton will be encouraged by their own recent form. Here, Sports Mole looks at how Jurgen Klopp could line his side up at Anfield. Out: Jordan Henderson (suspended), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (...

Arsenal team news: Predicted XI vs. Tottenham Hotspur

Sports Mole looks at how Arsenal could line up for Sunday’s North London derby against Tottenham Hotspur as Alexandre Lacazette and Laurent Koscielny push for returns. Arsenal‘s 18-match unbeaten streak across all competitions will face two stringent tests in the space of three days at the beginning of December, starting with the North London derby against Tottenham Hotspur. The Gunners have quickly found their identity under Unai Emery and sit just one point off the Champions League places with a third of the season gone ahead of a double-header against Spurs and Manchester United. Victory at the Emirates on Sunday would see Arsenal draw level on points with their neighbours and leapfrog them on goal difference, but they are coming up against a Spurs side in good form themselv...

Manchester United team news: Predicted XI vs. Southampton

Sports Mole looks at how Manchester United could line up for Saturday’s Premier League clash with Southampton at St Mary’s. Manchester United will be looking to return to winning ways in the Premier League on Saturday evening when they take on Southampton at St Mary’s. The Red Devils are closer to the bottom of the table than they are to leaders Manchester City after 13 games of the campaign, having been held to a goalless draw at home to Crystal Palace last time out. However, Jose Mourinho will be hoping to harness the momentum from their late winner against Young Boys on Tuesday ahead of their trip to face the struggling Saints, who are winless in nine games. Here, Sports Mole looks at how United could line up for the match. Out: Victor Lindelof (groin), Marcos Rojo (kn...

Arsenal team news: Predicted XI vs. Vorskla Poltava

Sports Mole looks at how Arsenal could line up for their Europa League Group E clash with Vorskla Poltava on Thursday afternoon. Arsenal could secure top spot in Europa League Group E on Thursday night when they take on Vorskla Poltava. The contest will go ahead despite escalating tensions in Ukraine, although it has been moved from Poltava to Kiev after martial law was declared in the area. Arsenal must put the off-field issues to one side as they bid to remain unbeaten, knowing that they only need to match or better Sporting Lisbon’s result to clinch first place. Here, Sports Mole looks at how Unai Emery could set his side up for the contest. Out: Konstantinos Mavropanos (groin), Nacho Monreal (thigh), Danny Welbeck (ankle)Doubtful: Laurent Koscielny (fitness), Stephan Lichtsteiner...

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