Saturday, June 10, 2023

Prediction: Manchester United vs Real Sociedad

Verdict: Manchester United win

Best Odds: 7/10

Bookmaker: Unibet

Looking to open their Europa League adventure with a flurry at Old Trafford, Manchester United will host Real Sociedad on Thursday night.

Manchester United

Starting with the hosts, while Manchester United might have found themselves in the midst of a public nightmare when opening the 2022/23 campaign, the former Premier League champions have come roaring back. Last seen over the weekend keeping up their red-hot momentum with a 3-1 romp against Arsenal at Old Trafford, new boss Erik ten Hag should find the mood in his camp at a real high. Shocking almost everyone across England last month as they picked up a 2-1 victory against title contenders Liverpool, the former Ajax boss now finds his side in the midst of a four-match winning run. Skyrocketing their way up the Premier League table, United will be desperate to keep up that momentum here. Picking up back-to-back wins at Old Trafford against Arsenal and Liverpool, ten Hag could be calling on England international Marcus Rashford to spearhead their charge on Thursday night. Bagging a brace over the weekend, the 24-year-old has already notched three top-flight strikes so far this season.

Team News

After being dropped from Premier League duties over the past few weeks, Harry Maguire and Cristiano Ronaldo could be handed a full return on Thursday night.

Making the blockbuster move from Real Madrid in a deal worth £70million, five-time Champions League winner Casemiro could make his full Manchester United debut here.

Real Sociedad

As for the visitors, while Real Sociedad might have suffered just a single defeat from their opening four La Liga matchups this season, Imanol Alguacil’s men have the feel of a side seeking some stability. However, while the Spanish outfit might have been blown away on August 21st as they were hit with a 4-1 drumming at home against Barcelona, they did put in a largely gritty display over the weekend. Eventually mounting a second-half comeback against Atletico Madrid as they played out a 1-1 draw in the Basque Country, the Erreala are seeking a clinical edge in the final third. Knowing that they face a tough test when they make the trip to a high-flying Old Trafford on Thursday night, it should be noted that Sociedad do hold a downbeat European record on the road. Aside from a hard-fought 1-0 victory against Sturm Graz 11 months ago, that is the only win that Alguacil’s men have collected from their previous seven Europa League showdowns away from the Anoeta Stadium.

Team News

Real Sociedad will be without central defender Robin Le Normand when they make the trip to Old Trafford on Thursday night.

Likewise, Alguacil’s side will also be without the trio of Martin Merquelanz, Mikel Oyarzabal and Carlos Fernández here.

Key Factors to Consider

    • When the two sides faced off in the Europa League knockout stages last season, Manchester United picked up a 4-0 aggregate victory.
    • The Red Devils have won each of their last four Premier League outings by an aggregate score of 7-2.
    • Continuing on from last season, Real Sociedad have bagged over 1.5 goals in just two of their previous 11 La Liga matchups.
    • Likewise, Thursday’s guests have managed to win just one of their last seven Europa League contests on foreign soil.
    • Manchester United have not lost a Europa League matchup at Old Trafford since a 3-2 defeat against Athletic Bilbao in March 20212.


    Picking up that eye-catching 3-1 victory at home against Arsenal last weekend, Manchester United suddenly find themselves in the midst of a real purple patch. Winning each of their last four Premier League outings and skyrocketing their way up the table, ten Hag’s men will be smelling the chance to lay down a European marker here. Shocking many as they snatched a 2-1 win against bitter rivals Liverpool last month, Real Sociedad will know that they face a tough test when opening their Europa League adventure. Crashing out of last season’s tournament after a 4-0 aggregate defeat at the hands of United, we’re backing a home victory on Thursday.

    Verdict: Manchester United win

    Best Odds: 7/10

    Bookmaker: Unibet


    Tom Dunstan

    Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
    Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan



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    Izuchukwu Samson Nweze
    Izuchukwu Samson Nweze
    9 months ago


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