Ten Hag explains team to face Southampton

Sunday 12 March 2023 13:15

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has made two changes to his starting XI, as we take on Southampton in the Premier League at Old Trafford.

Following our 4-1 win over Real Betis in the Europa League in midweek, the Reds boss has opted to bring in both Jadon Sancho and Aaron Wan-Bissaka, as Diogo Dalot and Fred move to the bench.

It appears Erik has chosen to deploy Jadon Sancho in a no.10 role this afternoon, with Antony and Marcus Rashford joining him in an attacking trio behind Wout Weghorst. Bruno Fernandes and Casemiro anchor the side in deeper midfield roles.

Having returned to winning ways against Los Verdiblancos on Thursday night, United will be keen to do so domestically too, and Ten Hag has explained the reasoning behind his team selection when talking to MUTV.

Ten Hag: We need quick feet in midfield Video

Ten Hag: We need quick feet in midfield

Erik ten Hag explains his two changes and confirms who will play no.10 for United against Southampton...

''Our freshness is definitely one objective,'' began the boss. ''But also from a tactical perspective, first is the opponent. They have quick attackers, Aaron Wan-Bissaka is a really good defender.

''He can defend really good spaces in the back. And he came on very well on Thursday night and in the months before.

''He is [making] really good progress. And in the midfield, we make a change with Jadon [Sancho]. I think at 10, we need a strong press, you need quick feet in the midfield. You need a player there who can create and can run behind, [things that] Jadon can do.''

Adding further explanation to the role Fernandes will perform at Old Trafford, the Dutchman added: ''We have seen on Thursday night how good Bruno was acting in that position. His tactical play was really intelligent.

''He can play that role. We had the confirmation on the Thursday night and now he has to do it again.

''Bruno has a wide range of ground to cover and he has a lot of energy and he likes to do it. And it is difficult to defend for opponents when we have that dynamic in the midfield.

''Bruno will not always be in a deep role. He will also be arriving in a front line role and getting into scoring positions or in creative positions.''

Swedish defender Victor Lindelof is missing from today's matchday squad, due to illness.


 De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Martinez, Shaw; Casemiro, Fernandes, Sancho; Antony, Weghorst, Rashford.

Heaton, Dalot, Maguire, Malacia, Fred, Mainoo, McTominay, Pellistri, Garnacho.

Southampton: Bazunu; Walker-Peters, Bednarek, Bella-Kotchap, Perraud; Lavia, Ward-Prowse (c), Alcaraz; Walcott, Adams, Kamaldeen.

Subs: McCarthy, Caleta-Car, A.Armstrong, Onuachu, S.Armstrong, Mara, Salisu, Elyounoussi, Diallo.