Manchester United may have arrested a three-game losing streak with an EFL Cup victory, but having owed Northampton’s keeper a fair chunk of the credit for that, the number of question marks still hanging over Jose Mourinho’s side render their next fixture a very thorny one.
The visitors to Old Trafford on Saturday lunchtime are Leicester and although the Foxes were extra-time victims of Chelsea’s in midweek, there have been some very encouraging signs that the Premier League champions are over their dodgy start and beginning to fire.
While United were beaten by Feyenoord in the Europa League and subsequently punished 3-1 by Watford in the top flight, Claudio Ranieri’s charges won 3-0 at Club Brugge on their Champions League bow, before swatting Burnley aside by the same score at the King Power.
Leicester are 4/1 chances to pile more pressure on Mourinho with a win, while the draw is priced at 29/10, a result that will still be looked upon unfavourably by fans in light of Manchester City’s unrelenting march.
It is a big ask for Ranieri’s champs to record a fourth win in six matches at a ground where they have traditionally floundered since a 1-0 triumph back in 1998, yet United’s vulnerability is plain to see.
Debates rage over Mourinho’s best line up and there is every chance that the Portuguese will be tinkering again for the Premier League’s weekend curtain raiser, with barely a single one of the Red Devils squad outside of goalkeeper David De Gea guaranteed to start.
Other than potentially integrating new signing Islam Slimani in attack after his Burnley brace, the manager that has completely shaken off his tinker-man tag, will have eight or nine names penned in already.
What will make life particularly difficult for United is the onus on them to take the game to one of the finest counter-attacking units in the top flight, especially having been hemmed in by City on their last Old Trafford showing, when losing 2-1.
Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy, now on two and three goals respectively, could well be in their element if the spaces open.
Having left the Theatre of Dreams with a point last season, the 11/10 on Leicester in the double chance market may be a very good bet.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing