Unfortunately now for a second season running Luke Shaw will not make a return to his old club Southampton at the St Mary’s Stadium. He missed the game through injury last year and will be doing the same again this time around. This year’s injury though is a whole lot worse after a double leg fracture away in Eindhoven last Tuesday.
It’s only been five days since the horrific injury and the young lad has already had two operations but is now thankfully, back home in Manchester. Get well soon Luke, have a speedy recover and I’m sure you’ll come back even stronger and even better.
Shaw’s form this season has been superb, he’s been getting better and better with every game as his own confidence grows. The confidence of playing in a regular back four has helped tremendously too, as they were looking like a really solid unit, despite those 10 minutes at Swansea the other week.
Anyway, onto the game this afternoon now. I’m sure Rojo will come into the side but where, straight replacement at left back or move Blind over so he can go in at centre half. After Shaw’s injury, van Gaal put him on at centre half along side Smalling but I think for now, and more particularly for today I’d have him just slot in at left back.
Young is definitely a great option as an attacking left back as he proved last year, I’d just be cautious against playing him there in certain games. To be honest though, although he’s not played that much his impact and ability to get the ball into the box is second to none currently, so he may get another start. Along with both Schneiderlin and Rooney on their respective but different returns.
I won’t be at the game today I’m afraid, another away game sat watching from my own living room. I do enjoy Southampton away though and have been a fair few times, but not since they returned to The Premier League in 2012.
In fact the last time I went to St Mary’s was back in 2005 when we actually confirmed their relegation from the top flight in the last league game of the season. I remember we went one nil down early on, but then goals from Fletch and Ruud gave us the three points and sent them down.
I’d not gone down on the coach as I was in London all weekend, so after the game I went for a few quiet beers around town until the traffic died down. Then back to London on the train before eventually heading back to Manchester the next day.
Obviously I always believe we’ll win, but today I do have a sneaky feeling we’ll come away with maybe a one nil victory. I know they don’t concede many so if we can keep them out and then sneak a goal, maybe even Martial late on off the bench again. Enjoy the game!