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Other SportsGalatasaray v Manchester United: Preview, expected line-ups, how to watch and prediction

Galatasaray v Manchester United: Preview, expected line-ups, how to watch and prediction

The state of play

Back in 1993, Manchester United travelled to Istanbul to face Galatasaray in the second leg of a UEFA Champions League tie, being greeted when they touched down with an infamous banner which read: ‘Welcome to Hell’.

On that occasion, a goalless draw saw United eliminated from the competition on away goals, and the Red Devils return to Turkey on Wednesday with their European hopes again hanging by a thread.

United may have won five of their last six games on the domestic front to ease the pressure on boss Erik ten Hag, but three losses in four Champions League outings have put them at the foot of Group A.

Following their remarkable 4-3 defeat at Copenhagen on matchday four, United know they will be unable to advance if they lose in Istanbul. A draw could even be enough to eliminate them, should Copenhagen upset group winners Bayern Munich in Wednesday’s other game.

Read our other Manchester United news stories here:
Ten Hag confident Mainoo can handle Galatasaray trip
Ten Hag calls for calm as Red Devils prepare to revisit ‘hell’ for Champions League tussle
Generous Manchester United star Garnacho gifts boots to young fan

Galatasaray, meanwhile, will fancy their chances of dealing a fatal blow to United’s Champions League dreams, having managed a stunning 3-2 win at Old Trafford in the reverse fixture on matchday two, when former United winger Wilfried Zaha was among the scorers.

The Turkish giants have only suffered one defeat all season in domestic action, though they enter Wednesday’s match third in Group A, level on points with Copenhagen. With a trip to Denmark coming up on the final matchday, a win here would provide a massive boost to their own last-16 hopes.

Team news

United will be without the suspended Marcus Rashford after he was shown a straight red card against Copenhagen earlier this month, so Alejandro Garnacho should keep his place out wide following his stunning overhead kick against Everton. Rasmus Hojlund scored twice in their last Champions League game, and he and Antony are available after missing Sunday’s 3-0 win at Goodison Park.

Ten Hag has something of an selection crisis to contend with in midfield, though, with Mason Mount, Casemiro and Christian Eriksen all sidelined, so Kobbie Mainoo could keep his place after impressing on his first Premier League start at the weekend.

Galatasaray are likely to be without injured centre-backs Abdulkerim Bardakci and Davinson Sanchez, with the former Tottenham man suffering a hamstring issue in Saturday’s 4-0 win over Alanyaspor. There were concerns over the availability of goalkeeper Fernando Muslera, but he started that game and should continue between the sticks.

Expected line-ups

Galatasaray: Muslera; Boey, Nelsson, Ayhan, Angelino; Torreira, Ndombele; Yilmaz, Mertens, Zaha; Icardi.

Manchester United: Onana; Dalot, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw; McTominay, Mainoo; Antony, Fernandes, Garnacho; Hojlund.

What they said

Erik ten Hag on what a win would do for United’s season:

“Of course a win would help, but I don’t think of scenarios, we have to do it. We have to rise to the occasion. But you can see what it would do, like beating Everton, it would give us belief and confidence.”

United captain Bruno Fernandes:

“Obviously, for us it’s really important to be in this competition. We want to be with the best clubs in Europe. It’s disappointing if we don’t go through, but I’m not thinking about that, we’re only thinking about the Galatasaray game.

“The only chance we have to go through is to win against Galatasaray and go into the last match with a chance.”

Galatasaray assistant manager Ismael Garcia Gomez:

“I think it’s going to be a very open game, like it was at Old Trafford. I don’t think either team will say ‘maybe a draw and then see what happens in the last game.’ No. Both teams have a chance to go through, so it should be an exciting game.”

When and how to watch

The game at Rams Park kicks off at 17:45 UK time, and will be available to watch live on TNT Sports 1 in the UK.

Prediction

Though United have found ways to grind out victories in the Premier League of late, the absences of Rashford, Casemiro and Lisandro Martinez could be keenly felt in what is likely to be a red-hot atmosphere in Turkey.

Though Hojlund – the Champions League’s joint-leading scorer with five goals this season – could continue his fine form in Europe, expect Galatasaray to put United on the brink of a humiliating early exit by claiming a draw, leaving the Red Devils needing to overcome Bayern on matchday six.

Harry Carr
Harry Carr
Harry is a freelance sports journalist with experience of working for the Racing Post, Stats Perform, Opta Analyst and more, covering major events across all sports but holding a particular love for the beautiful game.
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