Tuesday Briefing: Early team news for PSG
As was the case in our last two meetings with Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United have a number of injury concerns ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League tie.
The Reds require just a point from our meeting with the French champions at Old Trafford to book a place in the knockout stages with a game to spare, after winning three of our four Group H matches so far.
However, that result may have to be achieved without several of the players who featured in our 2-1 win at the Parc des Princes in October.
We’ll know more when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer appears in front of the press at 13:00 GMT later today, but here’s the situation as it stands…
David De Gea was set to undergo a scan on the knee injury he picked up while trying to keep out James Ward-Prowse’s free-kick during Sunday’s win at Southampton – the Spaniard sat out the second half and was replaced by Dean Henderson, who will presumably start between the sticks if David fails that fitness test.
We’ve known for some weeks that Luke Shaw would miss this game, as a result of the hamstring issue he picked up at Everton last month.
Alex Telles, who made his debut in Paris and has come into the side in place of Shaw for recent wins over West Brom, Istanbul Basaksehir and Southampton, is also a doubt after leaving the field early at St Mary’s – if he can’t make it, Brandon Williams may be tasked with deputising at left-back.
Axel Tuanzebe was a stand-out performer in the French capital, keeping the dangerous Kylian Mbappe quiet, but he is a confirmed absentee for United as he is serving a one-match suspension for picking up three bookings.
In midfield, it is hoped Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba have been able to resume training in their bids to recover from the knocks that ruled them out of the trip to the south coast.
After his two-goal Saints blitz, Edinson Cavani is ready for a reunion with the club where he holds the all-time goalscoring record, but United will hope to have Anthony Martial as an option too – the Frenchman has been struggling with illness.
Match Centre: How Cavani changed the game
Watch Edinson's highlights v Saints in 2020 - including two goals, one assist, near-misses and some top challenges...
PSG TEAM NEWS
Thomas Tuchel’s media briefing is scheduled for 17:45 GMT – and the German will want a statement win from last season’s Champions League finalists, after a less-than-stellar start to the new campaign.
The French champions sit top of Ligue 1 but have lost three times already and, realistically, need to secure all three points at Old Trafford if they are to stave off the threat of dropping into the Europa League come February.
The good news for PSG is that many of the men who missed October’s game are back from injury and look to be available for selection again, including the creative Marco Verratti.
Influential captain Marquinhos did return earlier this month but missed Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Bordeaux, while Pablo Sarabia and Mauro Icardi are out, as are long-term absentees Julian Draxler and Juan Bernat.
WHAT’S HAPPENING TODAY?
As well as the two press conferences, where the managers will provide updates on the fitness of their squads, both sides will train in front of the cameras – which could give us some additional clues as to who will play on Wednesday.
We’ll also have a sneak preview of the official matchday programme ahead of the big clash, including an exclusive interview with one of the players.
WHAT HAPPENED YESTERDAY?
United discovered our FA Cup third-round opponents, with the tie set to be played in early January. Find out more, if you missed the draw.
There was reaction from Bruno Fernandes to Sunday’s wonderful comeback victory at Southampton, while we opened our Player of the Month vote for November – see which three Reds have been nominated, and how to make your voice heard.
Finally, the latest episode of UTD Podcast, featuring ‘the last Busby Babe’ - Sammy McIlroy – was released. Read a fascinating excerpt from our chat with the Northern Irishman here.