Manchester United will be eying for revenge for last year’s Europa League final defeat as Villarreal come visiting on Wednesday.
Manchester United have had a topsy-turvy start to the 2021-22 season. There have been flashes of genius which have been followed up by passages of mediocrity. It looks like there is no in-between for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side who go into their second Champions League tie on the back of successive losses.
A 1-0 loss to West Ham United in the League Cup preceded a gut-wrenching defeat to Aston Villa by the same margin at Old Trafford. After conceding the lead as late as the 88th minute, the Red Devils had a chance to restore parity as they were awarded a penalty in the last minute of stoppage time.
However, the ever-reliable Bruno Fernandes skied his kick and United couldn’t save a point. They come into Wednesday's game desperately needing to secure a victory. Solskjaer’s men fell to Young Boys in their Champions League opener. United were reduced 10-men as early as the 35th minute of the game.
A Jesse Lingard howler in the last minute of the game cost them dearly and a win is the need of the hour if they are to lift the mood of the Old Trafford faithful. Meanwhile, Villarreal have played out six draws in their seven fixtures across La Liga and the Champions League so far this season.
They held Real Madrid to a goalless draw in their most recent outing over the weekend. The Yellow Submarine settled for a 2-2 draw against Atalanta in their Champions League opener.
Although they got the better of Manchester United in the Europa League final last term, Villarreal’s style of play was far from enterprising. Fans will be hoping to see more bite from their side as they travel to Manchester to take on the mighty Red Devils.
Manchester United and Villarreal have clashed five times till date. Four matches have ended as draws. Villarreal won the last time the two teams locked horns. That was in the Europa League final and the Yellow Submarine prevailed on penalties.
Marcus Rashford and Amad Diallo continue to be sidelined with injuries. Edinson Cavani featured off the bench in United's latest outing against Aston Villa. Aaron Wan-Bissaka is suspended after picking up a straight red card in the game against Young Boys. Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire were both forced off in the game against Aston Villa and could both be unavailable here.