Manchester United will take to the pitch under new interim manager Ralf Rangnick for the second time when they host Young Boys in the final round of Champions League group stage fixtures.
There was a notable tactical improvement under the revered German coach when United beat Crystal Palace in the Premier League at the weekend and fans will be keen to see the team continue to develop on a positive trajectory under the midweek lights.
United have already qualified for the Champions League knockout stages by virtue of matchday five’s away win against Villarreal, as well as securing top spot in the group. This dead rubber therefore gives Rangnick a good opportunity to see some of the other players at his disposal.
Young Boys, meanwhile, are out of the running to progress in this competition but still have a chance of dropping into the Europa League if they spring a shock and Atalanta are beaten at home by Villarreal in the group’s other match.
This is everything you need to know about the game…
When is kick off? Wednesday 8 December, 20:00 (GMT)
Where is the match being played? Old Trafford
TV channel/live stream? BT Sport 2 (UK), Paramount+ (US), DAZN (Canada)
Highlights? BT Sport YouTube Channel
Referee? Benoit Bastien (FRA)
VAR? Benoit Millot (FRA)
On top of missing several players through injury, Rangnick has confirmed he intends to rotate fresh players into the starting XI ahead of what is now a congested period of fixtures.
Raphael Varane and Edinson Cavani will likely remain sidelined until after the weekend despite resuming light training following thigh and tendon problems respectively. Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba are also unavailable, while Luke Shaw and Jesse Lingard remains doubts.
Rangnick has confirmed that Dean Henderson and Donny van de Beek will start. There could also be opportunities at some point in the match for Anthony Elanga and Teden Mengi.
You can read Man Utd’s predicted lineup here.
The Swiss champions are dealing with something of an injury crisis going into this one and are expected to be missing at least eight players.
That list of absentees includes number one goalkeeper David von Ballmoos, midfielders Christian Fassnacht and Esteban Petignat, defenders Cedric Zesiger and Ulisses Garcia, and forwards Jean-Pierre Nsame and Joel Monteiro.
Club captain Fabian Lustenberger has only started twice since his return from long-term injury.
This week’s match is the fourth time that United and Young Boys have ever met, with fans at Old Trafford not needing any reminder of the last time a couple of months ago.
That 2-1 defeat was one of several nails in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s coffin, as United wilted under the pressure when Aaron Wan-Bissaka was sent off in the first half in Bern.
The other two meetings came in the 2018/19 Champions League group stage. Paul Pogba scored twice in a 3-0 win in Switzerland in the first of those, before a late winner from Marouane Fellaini secured Jose Mourinho’s United a 1-0 victory in the reverse fixture at Old Trafford.
United have clearly responded well to Rangnick’s instructions since he took over late last week. Even with a rotated lineup, that sudden tactical resurgence, combined with the depth of quality that exists in the squad, and Young Boys’ injury problems, should spell a home win.
Prediction: Man Utd 2-0 Young Boys