After their 2-0 victory over Perth Glory, Manchester United need to up their game to beat Leeds United on Wednesday.
In the first pre-season game, Solskjaer’s men showed us what they have been working on in the training ground. We saw an incredibly high pressing attack against a Perth defence that often had at least nine or ten players behind the ball.
The link-up play and close control was reminiscent of the incredible winning streak Man United had when Solskjaer first took over. New signings Daniel James and Aaron Wan-Bissaka had fantastic debuts, lifting the spirits of the fanbase.
However, Solskjaer opted for two completely different eleven men to feature in each half of the game. This means we still have to see how the Reds fare in a competitive 90 minutes, something Leeds United will certainly offer.
How the lineup against Leeds should look
With the Premier League looming, Solskjaer will be keen on figuring out his strongest eleven. Resulting in a starting eleven that could resemble this…
Manchester United would do well to toy with the idea of having two forward men, both capable of drifting out wide. This would give Jesse Lingard space to move further up the field as he performs best in the number 10 role, adapting to a second striker position when forwards drag defenders out wide.
How the formation can be adapted
This formation is easily transformed into Man Utd’s main formation 4-3-3, and by introducing some exciting substitutions, it would look like this…
A forward three of blistering pace, in front of the creative genius Paul Pogba, who sits alongside high-pressing Lingard, guarded by golden-boy Scott McTominay.
Axel Tuanzebe could replace Victor Lindelof as the ball-playing defender as Man United lack options other than Chris Smalling to provide an aerial threat. At least, until Harry Maguire joins the ranks as reports surface of the transfer being close to completion.
These line ups portray both the quality and versatility of Solskjaer’s set up.
Leeds United placed third in the Championship last season. Narrowly missing out on promotion in the playoffs. Therefore, Leeds can provide a similar type of test that many Premier League level teams will in the upcoming season.
Should Manchester United fail to dominate the match, it could provide a scary insight into what the Red Devils will perform like in Premier League.