Manchester United vs Villarreal predictions and match preview for Wednesday’s UEFA Champions League fixture. Read on for the head-to-head, team news, predicted lineups and fantasy football picks as the Yellow Submarine head to England.
|Date||Wednesday 29th September 2021|
|Kick-Off||20:00 (local time)|
|Competition||UEFA Champions League Group Stage|
Manchester United vs Villarreal Preview
Wednesday’s Champions League action witnesses a repeat of the Europa League Final. Villarreal triumphed in Poland in May after an epic penalty shootout to land their first ever trophy. They were underdogs then and will be again at Old Trafford this Wednesday but they should take confidence from having gone toe to toe with the Premier League side so recently.
Villarreal are still unbeaten inside 90 minutes this season which also bodes well for their chances of getting a result. They’ve drawn 5 of their 6 league games as well as their opening Champions League game against Atalanta. While that tendency to draw too much may be their undoing in LaLiga, they’d gladly settle for another here and they’d really have to make the most of their upcoming double-header against group outsiders Young Boys.
Unai Emery’s men were last in action on Saturday away to Real Madrid. They had to dig deep to maintain their unbeaten record but did so with a 0-0 draw and they have already travelled to both Madrid clubs this season without losing. The villain at the Wanda Metropolitano was Gerónimo Rulli who was largely responsible for a comical own goal which gifted Atleti a late point but the Argentine made up for that with a much more assured display at the Bernabeu this weekend.
As for Manchester United, they come into this game following a 1-0 home defeat against Aston Villa and having also surprisingly lost their opening Champions League fixture away to Young Boys. Ole Gunnar Solskjær is under renewed scrutiny as a result, particularly following the kind of recruitment United have done this summer with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane arriving.
They aren’t helped by a couple of defensive absentees here but Villarreal have their own issues which may make it tricky to take advantage of that. This has the feel of the kind of group which will go to the wire after the unfancied Swiss side blew it right open as the only victors on matchday 1. Every point will count and it would be a massive boost for Villarreal if they can come away from this game with a point.
Head to Head
- The sides drew 1-1 in the UEFA Europa League Final in May with Villarreal winning 11-10 on penalties.
- The previous 4 meetings between the clubs all ended 0-0.
- The most recent of those came in the Champions League group stage in 2008.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka is suspended for United while fellow first choice defender Harry Maguire is injured. Luke Shaw is also a doubt.
Gerard Moreno and Yeremy Pino are both injured for the visitors. Francis Coquelin is suspended while Juan Foyth is a doubt.
Predicted Manchester United Starting Lineup:
De Gea – Shaw, Varane, Lindelof, Dalat – Pogba, Matic – Sancho, Fernandes, Greenwood – Ronaldo (4-2-3-1)
Predicted Villarreal Starting Lineup:
Rulli – Pedraza, Torres, Albiol, Foyth – Trigueros, Parejo, Capoue – Danjuma, Dia, Gomez (4-3-3)
Manchester United vs Villarreal Predictions
Score Prediction: Manchester United 1-0 Villarreal
With a full strength side, you’d have given Villarreal a real chance in this game but Gerard Moreno is so key for them going forward, that you worry they may struggle to land serious punches on their English opponents. They are capable of frustrating this Manchester United side as they proved in Gdansk but with so much attacking quality, Solskjær’s men should find a winner at some point in the game.