Match preview: United v Watford

Friday 25 February 2022 07:00

Manchester United round off the month of February with Saturday's Premier League game against Watford at Old Trafford.

Roy Hodgson’s Hornets are the visitors for a traditional 15:00 GMT kick-off, as our attentions return to domestic matters following the midweek draw away to Atletico Madrid in the Champions League. 

So, without further ado, here’s all the key information you need ahead of this weekend’s outing…
90 in 20: Atletico Madrid 1 United 1 Video

90 in 20: Atletico Madrid 1 United 1

Set aside 20 minutes to watch the extended highlights of our Champions League last-16 first leg in Spain...


Given the kick-off time, the game will not be broadcast live on television in the UK. So, if you’re not at the Theatre of Dreams, be sure to follow our club media coverage, including on MUTV where we will have the usual pre-match build-up, live radio commentary and reaction after the final whistle. We’ve also got you covered on, as well as in the Manchester United App, where you will find rolling updates, in-game data and expert analysis from our team of pundits.


Ralf Rangnick is expected to provide an update on how we’re shaping up for the weekend clash when he speaks to the media this Friday afternoon at 12:45 GMT. Edinson Cavani (groin) and Scott McTominay (ill) both missed Wednesday’s trip to the Wanda Metropolitano but we could get an update on their availability, and news of any fresh absentees, during the interim manager's press conference. 

As for the opposition, Hodgson told reporters following their 4-1 defeat to Crystal Palace in midweek that former Reds striker Joshua King had picked up a knock in the training session prior to that match. The forward was withdrawn six minutes into the second half and it remains to be seen whether he will be fit enough to play on Saturday. The same can be said for wingers Joao Pedro and Juraj Kucka who both missed the loss to Palace through injury. 


United come into the game off the back of that draw in Madrid but before that, Rangnick’s side registered successive Premier League victories over Leeds United and Brighton, and will be looking to make it three on the spin in top flight come Saturday. 

Watford will also be eager to leave M16 with three points, having won just one of their 14 games across all competitions since November’s reverse fixture at Vicarage Road. That sole victory did come on their most recent away outing however, as Hodgson got his first triumph in charge of the club, at Aston Villa last weekend.

Why McTominay misses out


Revealed: Why our tough-tackling midfielder is absent for tonight's tie.


Dating back to 1950, the two sides have met 36 times competitively in total: United have won 24, five have been drawn, while Watford have come out on top in the other seven. The most recent meeting came in November as the Hornets ran out 4-1 winners at Vicarage Road, but despite that result, we boast a strong recent record in the fixture. United have won seven of the last nine clashes with the Hertfordshire-based side, most recently in last season’s FA Cup third round, when McTominay’s header was the only goal at Old Trafford. 
Our no.39 netted the decisive winner against Watford, and captained United for the first time, in January 2021.


Referee: Kevin Friend
Adrian Holmes, Simon Beck
Fourth official:
Dean Whitestone
Lee Mason
Assistant VAR:
Timothy Wood


Our game is one of eight Premier League fixtures being played across three days this weekend. Chelsea and Liverpool's meeting in the Carabao Cup final on Sunday means their top-flight games against Leicester City and Arsenal respectively have been postponed.


Southampton v Norwich City (20:00 GMT)


Leeds United v Tottenham Hotspur (12:30 GMT)
Brentford v Newcastle United
Brighton & Hove Albion v Aston Villa
Crystal Palace v Burnley
UNITED v Watford
Everton v Manchester City (17:30 GMT)


West Ham United v Wolverhampton Wanderers (14:00 GMT)

All kick-offs are 15:00 GMT unless stated.