This Saturday sees the biggest game of the season so far, the predicted Newcastle team v Brighton below.
Who will Rafa Benitez go for?
In at least two ways, I think this is a very straightforward selection for the manager.
Firstly, the team did very well at Old Trafford and only after tiring late in the game, combined with the power of the home side’s bench, did things come unstuck.
Secondly, it is very difficult to make a case for many squad players to be given a chance, based on what we have seen from them previously.
Martin Dubravka is the easiest selection in the 11.
Whilst I think the back four is also straightforward for Rafa Benitez, depending on fitness.
With Lejeune still out, Lascelles and Fernandez ave done well and will surely continue. Fabian Schar got good write-ups after Switzerland beat Iceland this week but it would be a major surprise if he started his second PL game on Saturday.
DeAndre Yedlin didn’t finish his second international of this break until around 3am (UK time) on Wednesday morning. Only playing the last six minutes of a 1-1 draw against Peru, Rafa will be determined to have him on the pitch, especially with Manquillo the only cover.
Speaking of which, I thought the Spaniard did ok at Old Trafford up to a point. However, with Paul Dummett back in training, the first (only!) choice left-back is set to return.
Kenedy was back in form at Man Utd and of course scored an excellent goal, along with Ritchie they will certainly play. All three subs at Old Trafford weakened the Newcastle team, whilst Manchester United did the opposite, having around £200m worth of players sitting on the bench and the three they brought on, all played key roles in changing the game.
Murphy and Atsu were really poor and made no case at all to be involved tomorrow, the same with Joselu when he came on.
Goalscorer Yoshinori Muto was excellent on his first PL start, as well as his goal his all round mobile play was a step above anything we’ve seen from Perez and Joselu.
Having said that, with Rondon not seen back out training as yet, Perez is an easy selection with only Joselu competing for a game. The former Tenerife player did do a bit better at Old Trafford and his movement was improved a little as well, with Muto maybe sparking him into life a bit.
An easy team selection for Rafa Benitez in my opinion and this is how I think they will line up: