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Saturday, June 22, 2024

Preview: Brighton vs. Manchester United

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Manchester United will aim to end an underwhelming season positively when they face Brighton this Sunday in the last game of the 2023/24 Premier League campaign.

Manchester United will enter this match in danger of experiencing their lowest-ever league finish and achieving the least points tally for the first time in 34 years. Erik Ten Hag’s future looms in uncertainty but he will aim to rally his players to get the three points from the final game.

The Red Devils finally got back to winning ways in their previous outing versus Newcastle United after back-to-back defeats to Crystal Palace and Arsenal. Goals from Kobbie Mainoo, Amad Diallo and Rasmus Hojlund helped United survive a late comeback from the Magpies who came just short on the day.

Erik Ten Hag’s men have a Conference League spot at stake as they need to better Newcastle’s result against Brentford to qualify for Europe. If they fail, United will have to beat Manchester City in the F.A. Cup Final to secure Europa League football for next season.

Meanwhile, Brighton will be content with the season’s performances despite not reaching the same heights of finishing sixth last year. Roberto De Zerbi’s men will not be able to better their 10th-place position but will attempt to defend that against Man United as they are closely followed by Bournemouth, Crystal Palace and Wolves.

The Seagulls have won only three of their last 15 matches across all competitions and have faced issues finding the net during this period. Interestingly, they have scored the same number of goals (55) as that of their Sunday opponents.

Brighton will have a little piece of history to chase against United as they could be the only team alongside Norwich City to beat the Manchester giants in five successive league matches.

Results from their last five matches across all competitions

Brighton:

L D W L L

Manchester United:

W L L D W

Team News

Erik Ten Hag will miss Luke Shaw, Harry Maguire, Tyrell Malacia and Mason Mount this weekend.

Raphael Varane is expected to start in his second-last game with Man United although he is recovering from a muscle issue.

Rasmus Hojlund might get the nod upfront and Bruno Fernandes will play his number 10 role.

As for Brighton, Lewis Dunk is set to join Solly March, Kaoru Mitoma, Jack Hinshelwood, Pervis Estupinan, Evan Ferguson, James Milner and Jan Paul van Hecke on the sidelines with injury.

Joel Veltman’s presence is uncertain. Igor Julio and Adam Webster should partner in defence.

Predicted XIs

Brighton (4-2-3-1): Verbruggen; Lamptey, Webster, Igor, Barco; Gilmour, Gross; Buonanotte, Pedro, Adingra; Welbeck

Manchester United (4-2-3-1): Onana; Wan-Bissaka, Casemiro, Evans, Dalot; Amrabat, Mainoo; Diallo, Fernandes, Garnacho; Hojlund

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