After back-to-back late disappointments in Bristol and Leicester, Manchester United return home to Old Trafford on Boxing Day needing to add three points to their Premier League tally for a confidence boost as much as anything else.
Saturday’s late submission of two points at the King Power Stadium had Jose Mourinho fuming, with the manager slating his players’ lack of maturity after the game. So Tuesday’s visit of Sean Dyche’s men will see the United squad thrown under the spotlight as they look to get back on track.
Although Manchester City are now out of sight thanks to their 13-point lead, United will still be hoping to keep third-placed Chelsea at arms length with a ninth home win in 10 games this season.
MAN UTD INJURIES
Zlatan Ibrahimovic could be in contention to start after playing 68 minutes at Bristol City last Wednesday, while a late decision may be made on the fitness of Antonio Valencia after he sat out the 2-2 draw at Leicester.
Eric Bailly is out for the foreseeable future with a serious ankle injury sustained on international duty with Cote d’Ivoire which has resulted in the need for surgery, while Marouane Fellaini could still be unavailable due to a knee injury.
Michael Carrick will remain on the sidelines following a procedure to deal with an irregular heart rhythm, but it is hoped that Chris Smalling will be fit for selection having picked up a slight knock late on at the King Power.
MAN UTD SUSPENSIONS
Ander Herrera has been booked four times this season and a yellow card against Burnley would see him pick up a one-match ban, while the same can be said for Ashley Young and Marcos Rojo. In fact, the Argentine has been cautioned in four of five domestic appearances this term.
Sean Dyche’s side are missing James Tarkowski due to his much-discussed three-match suspension for a clash with Brighton striker Glenn Murray.
MAN UTD POTENTIAL STARTING LINE-UP
Jose Mourinho could make any number of changes as he looks to keep his side fresh while also correcting some of the issues which saw them drop two points so late in the evening against Leicester.
As a result, Marcus Rashford, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Luke Shaw, Matteo Darmian, Ander Herrera and Marcos Rojo are among those who could all come into contention.
BURNLEY TEAM NEWS
Burnley have been one of the revelations of the season so far but will have a point to prove at Old Trafford after coming out on the wrong end of a Harry Kane hat-trick against Tottenham on Saturday.
James Tarkowski’s ban is a huge blow to Sean Dyche, while he will hope that Chris Wood can overcome the knee injury he suffered at Turf Moor at the weekend. If the former Leeds man doesn’t make it then there will be a call-up for either Sam Vokes or Ashley Barnes in attack.
The Clarets took a point from the visit to M16 last season, so Jose Mourinho’s side will be more than aware of the problems Dyche’s men can cause.