Manchester United will be looking to carry on their winning ways after beating Tottenham 3-0 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Despite Spurs’ poor form in recent weeks, that led to the sacking of Nuno Espirito Santo, the Reds were on top form with goals from their star men in Cristiano Ronaldo, Edinson Cavani and Marcus Rashford.
Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof would have been relieved to have Raphael Varane back after sustaining a groin injury whilst away on International Duty, getting that clean sheet would have meant a lot to those defenders.
Atalanta will be hoping for a more convincing defensive display than what we saw with their 2-2 draw with Lazio at the weekend, where a crucial 95th minute finish from Martin de Roon saw them seal their crucial point.
La Dea haven’t quite looked themselves this year, even though they are sitting fifth in the Serie A with a -1 goal difference between them and Roma, their attacking football hasn’t looked quite as dangerous or as potent as it has been in previous years.
With Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s job still at risk, it’s unlikely that he will be looking to change much from his 3-0 victory away at Tottenham.
The strike partnership of Ronaldo and Cavani seemed to work well for a first time showing and has potential for the future.
Given Atalanta’s attacking prowess in recent years the Red Devils should go on the offensive from the get-go, otherwise the game could be over before it even starts, with Ronaldo looking value money to get the opener considering he’s scored the first in 50% of the games he’s found the net in.
Draw And Both Teams To Score
Atalanta have only failed to score once in previous games against English opponents (Atalanta 0-5 Liverpool) since the 16/17 season. Although that loss did come at home, they then went on to beat Liverpool 2-0 at Anfield.
The hosts will look to play their normal formation of 3-4-1-2, which could cause some problems for Utd, especially with the height, physicality, and skillset of their top goal contributors in Josip Ilicic, Duvan Zapata and Mario Pasalic.
Those three have ten goals and eight assists between them this season, accounting for 56% of all goal contributions for Atalanta in the Serie A.
La Dea’s injury list is worrying however, with club captain Rafael Toloi and arguably their best player in Robin Gosens amongst the list.
This could lead to an interesting second half when Atalanta don’t have as much depth to fall back on.
Manchester United have lost four out of their last six away in the Champions League, the two victories both came against PSG at Parc de Princes with a late goal in each from Marcus Rashford to win them the game, while the only time that they have failed to score on the road since 18/19 was against Barcelona in a 3-0 defeat.
Atalanta’s home Champions league record is a relatively poor W3-D3-L4 and an average of 2.8 match goals in all of these games it’s hard to not pick both teams to score and/or over 2.5 goals.
DRAW AND BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE