Aston Villa v Man United: Cavani, Pogba and Bruno to bully?
It’s Aston Villa v Man United … The post Aston Villa v Man United: Cavani, Pogba and Bruno to bully? appeared first on Football365.
It’s Aston Villa v Man United on Sunday and we are expecting a lot of goals. Tactical preview here…
Aston Villa have managed to recover some of their solidity through midfield in recent weeks after a difficult, and somewhat chaotic, 2021. John McGinn has been stationed in a deeper role alongside Douglas Luiz as Dean Smith moves from an expansive 4-3-3 (with two free eights) to a more stoic 4-2-3-1.
Since Man Utd aren’t particularly hard pressing or possession-centric, it is likely to give us an even game at Villa Park and one that – between two managers who perhaps lack the detail of the division’s best tacticians – will be settled by individual moments of quality in head-to-head battles.
Key battle zone
Man Utd’s left flank should be the most important area of the pitch at both ends. United generally focus their attacks down the left and Luke Shaw has enjoyed overlapping Paul Pogba recently as the Frenchman cuts inside, and while Matty Cash is a top-quality right-back, he can be left a bit exposed by Bertrand Traore’s high starting position.
But Traore is improving all the time and, in Jack Grealish’s absence, is Villa’s most important threat on the counter-attack. His direct dribbling around Shaw could cause United issues; keep an eye on how the four players on this side of the pitch attempt to push each other back.
Keep an eye on… Cavani and Fernandes around Douglas Luiz
Luiz is still not back to his best at Villa, looking a little short of pace as he fails to anticipate loose balls or keep steady in the challenge. It seems to be a confidence issue, and while he is a little more tentative United can hope to find joy passing through the lines around the Brazilian. Pogba’s movement will already prove a distraction, but not as much as Edinson Cavani’s work.
Cavani is crucial to United getting past their sluggish side-to-side football. The Uruguayan drops off the front line to receive a ball through the lines, before . It is a simple action, but with Villa far from compressed through midfield it is the kind of move that could suddenly up the tempo of the game and get United on the front foot.
One to watch… Ross Barkley
In the 2-1 win at Everton Barkley enjoyed his best performance in a Villa shirt since the early days of the season. As a confidence player, that might spark a run of form to help drive Villa back into European contention; look out for his driving runs in possession, a simple feature that ought to work against the flat-footed .
However, more likely Barkley will go missing as he so often does in big games and, with Cavani and Pogba urging United forward, Villa will most likely shrink from the battle. In a game of individualists the team with the higher-quality players should bully their way to victory.
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