Your essential guide to Young Boys v United
Manchester United return to European action on Wednesday night with a trip to Switzerland to face Young Boys.
The Reds kick off our UEFA Champions League campaign against the Bern-based outfit, who will play in their first-ever match at this stage of Europe’s elite competition.
Jose Mourinho’s men enter the game on the back of consecutive morale-boosting wins away from home in the Premier League, against Burnley and Watford, either side of the international break.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of our Group H opener…
WHAT’S THE TEAM NEWS?
The boss has confirmed that Luke Shaw and Marcus Rashford will feature in Wednesday's game, while summer signing Diogo Dalot could finally make his first-team debut after recovering from injury. Captain Antonio Valencia has been left at home to prevent aggravation to his knee on the artificial surface at the Stade de Suisse. Nemanja Matic will be available as, like Rashford, his domestic suspension doesn't apply in European competition. Sergio Romero and Marcos Rojo are still working their way back to full fitness and have played for the Under-23s in recent weeks, along with Dalot.
HOW ABOUT YOUNG BOYS?
They are set to be without two players for the visit of the Reds – young midfielders Jordan Lotomba (knee) and Sandro Lauper (ankle). Former Serbia winger Miralem Sulejmani, who has previous European experience with Ajax and Benfica, could make his first start since suffering concussion after returning as a substitute last weekend.
HOW HAVE THEY STARTED THE SEASON?
Young Boys have made a blistering start to the campaign, winning nine of their 10 games in all competitions so far in 2018/19. The hosts are the current leaders of the Swiss Super League, with an eight-point lead already at the top of the table, having won their opening six league matches. However, it will be interesting to see if tiredness will be a factor on Wednesday as the Swiss outfit needed extra time to defeat FC Schaffhausen 3-2 in the Swiss Cup on Saturday, thanks to a dramatic late winner from defender Mohamed Ali Camara.
HOW HAVE THEY GOT HERE?
Young Boys were crowned Swiss champions for the 12th time last season but for the first time since 1986, finishing 15 points ahead of second-placed FC Basel to win the Swiss Super League. The club followed up their domestic title success by making some European history of their own, qualifying for the Champions League group stage for the first time after beating Croatian outfit Dinamo Zagreb 3-2 on aggregate in the play-offs. However, with tough tests against Juventus and Valencia to come, they will be up against it to progress to the knockout stage of the competition.
HAVE WE PLAYED THEM BEFORE?
The midweek clash will represent our very first competitive meeting with Young Boys. The two clubs were actually drawn against each other in 1958/59 but, when officials ruled against United's invited participation in the European Cup and gave Young Boys a bye to the next round, the sides played home and away friendlies. The Reds won 3-0 at Old Trafford on 1 October 1958, after losing 2-0 at Wankdorf Stadium on 24 September.
WHO’S THEIR MANAGER?
Gerardo Seoane guided FC Luzern to third place in the Swiss Super League, which was made more impressive by the fact the team were threatened by relegation when he took over the reins in January this year. Just five months later, the 39-year-old became Young Boys boss, succeeding Adi Hutter, who replaced Niko Kovac at German club Frankfurt following his departure to Bayern Munich. Seoane, who also spent the majority of his playing career as a midfielder in Switzerland, has hit the ground running in Bern and will be hoping his Young Boys can cause an upset or two during their maiden experience of the Champions League group stage.
WHAT’S OUR RECORD AGAINST SWISS TEAMS LIKE?
Young Boys will be only the second club from Switzerland to face United in European competition after FC Basel, against whom the Reds have a mixed record. From six previous encounters, we have won two, drawn two and lost two, scoring 11 goals and conceding eight. United did, however, get off to a winning start in the Champions League last season against Basel, as Marouane Fellaini, Marcus Rashford and Romelu Lukaku scored to earn Mourinho’s men a 3-0 victory at Old Trafford. You can watch the goals from that game below.
Goals: United 3 Basel 0Video
WHO’S THE REFEREE?
Experienced Bundesliga referee Deniz Aytekin will lead a team of German officials who will take charge of Wednesday’s game. The business manager from Bavaria will oversee his third United game, with the assistance of Eduard Beitinger, Rafael Foltyn, fourth official Dominik Schaal and additional assistant referees Tobias Welz and Benjamin Cortus. Aytekin sent off Eric Bailly in the Europa League away at Saint-Etienne in 2016/17 and handled the 3-1 Champions League play-off first-leg victory over Club Brugge at Old Trafford in August 2015.
WHO’S PLAYING WHO IN THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE?
There is a full complement of Champions League fixtures across Tuesday and Wednesday, as all 32 teams competing in the group stage play their first matches. Here’s the schedule in full…
Tuesday 18 September
GROUP A: Club Brugge v Borussia Dortmund
GROUP A: Monaco v Atletico Madrid
GROUP B: Barcelona v PSV Eindhoven (17:55 BST)
GROUP B: Inter Milan v Tottenham Hotspur (17:55 BST)
GROUP C: Red Star Belgrade v Napoli
GROUP C: Liverpool v Paris Saint Germain
GROUP D: FC Schalke 04 v FC Porto
GROUP D: Galatasaray v Lokomotiv Moscow
Wednesday 19 September
GROUP E: Ajax v AEK Athens (17:55 BST)
GROUP E: Benfica v Bayern Munich
GROUP F: Shakhtar Donetsk v Hoffenheim (17:55 BST)
GROUP F: Manchester City v Lyon
GROUP G: Real Madrid v Roma
GROUP G: Viktoria Plzen v CSKA Moscow
GROUP H: Valencia v Juventus
GROUP H: Young Boys v Manchester United
Matches kick off at 20:00 BST unless stated.