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Galatasaray
Champions League | Group Stage
Nov 29, 2023 at 5.45pm UK
Rams Global Stadium
Manchester United logo
Galatasaray
3 - 3
Man Utd
Ziyech (29', 62'), Akturkoglu (71')
Boey (42'), Ayhan (54')
FT(HT: 1-2)
Garnacho (11'), Fernandes (18'), McTominay (55')
Fernandes (27'), Amrabat (45+2'), Shaw (59'), Wan-Bissaka (64')

Preview: Galatasaray vs. Manchester United - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday's Champions League clash between Galatasaray and Manchester United, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Needing to avoid defeat to stand any chance of a place in the Champions League knockout rounds, Manchester United make the long journey to Rams Park in Istanbul to face Galatasaray in Wednesday's Group A fixture.

The Red Devils sit at the foot of the section with a paltry three points under their belt, although their hosts are only one point and one place better off heading into the penultimate gameweek.


Match preview

Galatasaray coach Okan Buruk before the match on October 24, 2023© Reuters

Keeping Bayern Munich at arm's length for 80 minutes at the Allianz Arena is no mean feat, and Galatasaray were on the verge of walking away from their matchday four contest with the Bundesliga champions with a hard-fought point to show for their efforts.

However, the deadlock was belatedly broken when Harry Kane nodded in Joshua Kimmich's free kick, and the England captain gave Bayern some much-needed breathing space with his second of the night in the 86th minute before Cedric Bakambu's strike set up a tense finish.

Bakambu's injury-time goal would end up being nothing more than a consolation, though, as Galatasaray agonisingly missed the chance to cement a top-two ranking in Group A, where three teams will engage in a fierce fight for second place while group winners Bayern watch on with popcorn in hand.

Level on points with Copenhagen but boasting an inferior goal difference to their Danish counterparts, nothing can be decided regarding the fate of Okan Buruk's men this week, although defeat coupled with a shock Copenhagen win over Bayern would leave them in a perilous position ahead of a possible winner-takes-all clash with the Scandinavians on December 12.

Three days after being bested in Bavaria, Buruk's men suffered their first Turkish Super Lig loss of the season to Hatayspor, but the hosts reverted to type with a 4-0 crushing of Alanyaspor on Saturday, where ex-Red Devils youth product Wilfried Zaha was among the scorers.

Manchester United's Alejandro Garnacho scores their first goal on November 26, 2023© Reuters

Zaha was one talented young winger who failed to fulfil his potential at Man United, but one of the Red Devils' current attacking proteges - Alejandro Garnacho - has already written himself into Premier League folklore by paying homage to Wayne Rooney, Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and co.

Akin to Rooney's outrageous overhead kick against Manchester City in 2011, Garnacho matched and arguably even bettered the Englishman's attempt with an astounding acrobatic effort of his own to open the scoring against Everton on Sunday, before Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial also got in on the act in a 3-0 win.

Red Devils fans have to go back to September's 3-0 EFL Cup beating of Crystal Palace for the last time that they won a game by at least two goals, and not since May's 4-1 beating of Chelsea had Man United prevailed by such a margin in the Premier League, offering hope that Erik ten Hag's side have just experienced a turning point in their season.

The visitors will live to fight another day in Group A so long as they draw or win against Galatasaray, but a fourth defeat from five Champions League games will send the Red Devils packing, and they will be condemned to finish bottom if they lose and Copenhagen put Bayern to the sword.

As if Man United did not already have enough incentives to make their long journey to Rams Park worthwhile, the Red Devils are out to avenge their crushing 3-2 loss to Galatasaray at Old Trafford last month, and they have failed to score in three away games versus the Turkish side, their longest such run against a single opponent in Europe.

Galatasaray Champions League form:


Galatasaray form (all competitions):


Manchester United Champions League form:


Manchester United form (all competitions):


Team News

Manchester United attacker Rasmus Hojlund after picking up an injury on November 11, 2023© Reuters

Galatasaray's four-goal crushing of Alanyaspor was not entirely perfect for Buruk, who lost former Tottenham Hotspur defender Davinson Sanchez to a grade two hamstring injury in the second half, ruling the Colombian out of the visit of Man United.

Buruk's defensive dilemma had already been complicated before the weekend, as Abdulkerim Bardakci suffered an injury in training on Friday and could not take part against Alanyaspor, but he is reportedly winning his battle to be fit for Wednesday.

Victor Nelsson will step in if Bardakci - who started alongside Sanchez against Bayern - needs more time to recover, and having made the net bulge twice against Alanyaspor, Dries Mertens could restrict Kerem Akturkoglu to minutes off the bench again.

While Galatasaray may only be without one player for Wednesday, Man United are one of several sides grappling with an injury crisis, as all of Lisandro Martinez (foot), Casemiro (thigh), Amad Diallo (knee), Mason Mount (calf), Jonny Evans (thigh), Christian Eriksen (knee) and Tyrell Malacia (knee) will sit out the trip to Istanbul.

Neither Antony (knock) nor Rasmus Hojlund (thigh) were in action at the weekend either, but the pair were seen in training on Tuesday and are expected to be back in the fold for Wednesday's game.

Still without an English top-flight goal to his name, Hojlund has already netted five times in Europe this term - the joint-most in the 2023-24 Champions League alongside Atletico Madrid's Alvaro Morata - and his return would be timely, as Marcus Rashford was sent off against Copenhagen and is suspended.


Galatasaray possible starting lineup:
Muslera; Boey, Bardakci, Ayhan, Angelino; Torreira, Demirbay; Ziyech, Mertens, Zaha; Icardi

Manchester United possible starting lineup:
Onana; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw; McTominay, Amrabat; Antony, Fernandes, Garnacho; Hojlund


SM words green background

We say: Galatasaray 2-2 Manchester United

With an abundance of youthful and experienced attacking talent at their disposal, Galatasaray have already given Man United a taste of their offensive power and ought to ask more questions of Ten Hag's backline in front of their own supporters.

Whether Sunday's beating of Everton is a catalyst for change for the Red Devils remains to be seen, but with Rashford's ban adding to the visitors' shortages, we are struggling to back Man United with any real conviction and can envisage another high-scoring European affair ending level, keeping Ten Hag's team in with a shot of a top-two placement.


For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.


Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


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Game History

How you voted: Galatasaray vs Man Utd

Galatasaray
38.5%
Draw
16.4%
Manchester United
45.1%
304
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Tables header RHS

Group A

TeamPWDLPTS
QBayern651016
QCopenhagen62228
3Galatasaray61235
4Man Utd61144

Group B

TeamPWDLPTS
QArsenal641113
QPSV62319
3Lens62228
4Sevilla60242

Group C

TeamPWDLPTS
QReal Madrid660018
QNapoli631210
3Braga61144
4Union Berlin60242

Group D

TeamPWDLPTS
QReal Sociedad633012
QInter Milan633012
3Benfica61144
4Salzburg61144

Group E

TeamPWDLPTS
QAtletico642014
QLazio631210
3Feyenoord62046
4Celtic61144

Group F

TeamPWDLPTS
QDortmund632111
QPSG62228
3AC Milan62228
4Newcastle61235

Group G

TeamPWDLPTS
QMan City660018
QRB Leipzig640212
3Young Boys61144
4Red Star60151

Group H

TeamPWDLPTS
QBarcelona640212
QPorto640212
3Shakhtar63039
4Antwerp61053

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