MX23RW : Sunday, April 5 21:42:32| >> :60:2993:2993:
Feb 20, 2020 at 5.55pm UK at Jan Breydelstadion
Attendance: 27,006
BruggeClub Brugge
Man UtdManchester United
FT(HT: 1-1)
Martial (36')

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

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of the Europa League last-32 first leg between Club Brugge and Manchester United.

Manchester United will be looking to carry their positive domestic form onto the European stage as they take on Club Brugge in the first leg of their Europa League last-32 tie.

The Red Devils are second favourites to lift the trophy in May and head to Jan Breydel Stadium on a four-match unbeaten streak in all competitions.

Match preview

Harry Maguire is mobbed after scoring Manchester United's second goal against Chelsea on February 17, 2020© Reuters

United made it three wins in their four-game unbeaten run with a 2-0 victory at Chelsea on Monday night, sealing the victory through headers in either half from Anthony Martial and Harry Maguire.

Chelsea will rightly argue that at least two big calls went against them, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will not lose any sleep over the manner of the victory.

It is a win that takes the Red Devils up to seventh in the Premier League and now within three points of fourth-placed Chelsea, while fifth place - likely to be enough to seal Champions League football next season - is only two points out of reach.

United also remain in the FA Cup, with a last-16 trip to Wayne Rooney's Derby County on the horizon, but for now all focus turns back to the Europa League after a 10-week absence.

Solskjaer's men won four, drew one and lost one of their matches en route to topping Group L. They fielded 32 different players in the first phase - more than any other side - but this is where the competition starts to become a little more serious.

Brugge are up next for United in their quest to win the competition for a second time in three years, the Belgian club having dropped down from the Champions League after finishing third in a group containing Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain.

There is no shame in that, of course, but Brugge last progressed from a Europa League knockout tie in 2014-15, and they are winless in their last 10 meetings with English sides in all competitions.

Philippe Clement's side lead the way at the top of the Belgian top flight and are unbeaten in 13 games. Replicating that form on the European stage is something they have struggled to achieve, however, and this could well be another hurdle that is too large to overcome.

Club Brugge's form (all competitions): DDWWDW

Manchester United's Europa League form: WDWWLW
Manchester United's form (all competitions): LLWWDW

Team News

Simon Mignolet in action for Liverpool on July 28, 2019© Reuters

Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford remain sidelined for United, but Scott McTominay and Axel Tuanzebe took part in training last week and are closing in on returns from their respective injury layoffs.

Victor Lindelof is United's only other fitness doubt after sitting out the win over Chelsea through illness, though it is not expected to be serious enough to rule him out for a second game running.

Further forward, Odion Ighalo made his debut from the bench at Stamford Bridge and is in contention to lead the line on Thursday.

Should Solskjaer opt to rotate his squad between Premier League games, the likes of Jesse Lingard, Mason Greenwood, Juan Mata, Diogo Dalot, Andreas Pereira and Phil Jones could receive minutes.

There will be a familiar face in goal for Brugge as Simon Mignolet joined on a permanent deal from Liverpool last August.

Michael Krmencik arrived from Viktoria Plzen last month and is expected to start this game, while Clinton Mata and Krepin Diatta are back available for selection after serving a European suspension.

Club Brugge possible starting lineup:
Mignolet; Mata, Mechele, Deli; Diatta, Vanaken, Balanta, Vormer, Ricca; Dennis, Krmencik

Manchester United possible starting lineup:
Romero; Dalot, Jones, Maguire, Williams; McTominay, Pereira; Greenwood, Fernandes, James; Ighalo

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We say: Club Brugge 0-2 Manchester United

United are not likely to name a full-strength side for the trip to Belgium, but whatever team Solskjaer fields should be strong enough to get the job done. Brugge have lost the previous two meetings between the sides and we are expecting a similar outcome in this first leg.


Who will win Thursday's Europa League clash between Club Brugge and Manchester United?

Club Brugge
Manchester United
Club Brugge
Manchester United
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