This is the predicted Newcastle team v Manchester United for Saturday afternoon’s match.

On Friday lunchtime, Rafa Benitez confirmed that a number of players would be missing.

Christian Atsu and Jamaal Lascelles joining Paul Dummett and Mikel Merino on the injured list.

Newcastle haven’t got great strength in depth but still a decent number of debates on who should play at Old Trafford.

For me, the defence pretty much picks itself, apart from possibly left-back.

Yedlin is an automatic selection and the same in the middle with Lejeune and Clark in Lascelles’ absence.

Manquillo has increasingly struggled but Rafa Benitez hasn’t shown any appetite for turning to Jesus Gamez or Chancel Mbemba, so Manquillo looks set to continue.

Ritchie will be on the right as per usual, whilst with Mikel Merino missing until at least Watford next Saturday, Shelvey and Hayden will also play.

The other three positions are maybe the most interesting.

Jacob Murphy looked like a rabbit in the headlights against Bournemouth at home, never mind starting him at Old Trafford.

Rolando Aarons has been totally ignored so difficult to see him catapulted into the team from nowhere.

Whilst Rafa has used him mostly in the middle, I see the United boss moving Ayoze Perez out wide left to a position where he has played plenty in the past.

I have little doubt that the majority would like to see  two potential goalscorers, one of them being Mitrovic, played in the furthest two front positions, but it isn’t going to happen.

Rafa did it in the last game with Joselu and Gayle and was unlucky not to see Newcastle a couple up in the first half, no chance of a repeat of those tactics today though.

He was terrible when getting a game at Burnley but I’m expecting to see Mohamed Diame starting today, with Rafa’s emphasis on keeping it tight and working hard defensively as a team, rather than committing much further up the pitch.

A lone striker role then and I think Dwight Gayle looks sure to fill it.

He scored a goal that was wrongly marked down as offside and looked sharp/quick despite not taking a couple of half chances, so Rafa will be hoping his pace will maybe just get the former Palace striker in a position where he could nick a goal.

The predicted Newcastle team v Manchester United:

newcastle team v manchester united

To create the image above I used the NUFC team selector.

You can do the same by following the simple instructions HERE and then there are a number of great options where you can then also share your team via Twitter (include @nufcthemag in your tweet and we will share some of them with our 22k followers) , or you can share the selector on Facebook with friends, family and the rest of the black and white world. Alternatively, simply downloading the team image to the device you are using

When using the NUFC team selector you simply click on what team formation (4-3-3, 4-4-2 etc) you want, then click each position on the pitch and choose from the Newcastle United squad.

Go to the NUFC team selector now and choose and share your Newcastle team v Manchester United.

Before every match, simply go to the menu at the top of this screen and click features, then on the drop down list click NUFC Team Selector and choose your team for every match.

Manchester United v Newcastle United Match Betting:

Man Utd win 2/7Draw 19/4Newcastle win 11/1

Both teams to score 15/4NUFC to win 1-0 28/1Gayle to score first goal 12/1

All Manchester United v Newcastle United betting HERE

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