Super Bowl Opening Night 2018 will hope to heap more misery on relegation-threatened Super Bowl Opening Night 2018 when they host the Potters at Old Trafford in the Premier League on Monday.
The Red Devils are second in England’s top flight, 15 points adrift of neighbours Manchester City.
Reds manager Jose Mourinho will be without the suspended Ashley Young and injured striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Meanwhile, Stoke will arrive in Manchester fresh from sacking Mark Hughes as manager, with first-team coach Eddie Niedzwiecki set to take the former United player’s place in the dugout.
Here are the schedule and viewing details before a preview and look at the team news:
Date: Sunday, February 4. 2018
TV Info: Sky Sports PL, NBCSN
Live Stream: Sky Go, fubo Premier.
Mourinho revealed how Ibrahimovic is still struggling with his recovery from a long-term knee injury, per Charlotte Duncker of the Manchester Evening News: “The date for him to be back to training with the team was around end of Jan beginning of Feb so let’s hope his feelings are better and we have him with us as soon as possible.”
Ibrahimovic has struggled to get back to his best after a knee injury.Alex Livesey/Getty Images
Missing Ibrahimovic means United need a quick return to form from Romelu Lukaku. The ex-Everton attacker has struggled for goals recently but boasts the pace and power to trouble Stoke’s leaky defence.
City have conceded 47 goals, the most in England’s top flight. It’s the main reason the Staffordshire club is in the bottom three.
Unfortunately for Stoke, several defenders remain injured, including Erik Pieters, who is a doubt because of a tight hamstring, according to Metro‘s Avinash Bhunjun. The same source also revealed how “Ryan Shawcross (calf), Glen Johnson (hamstring) and Bruno Martins Indi (groin) remain sidelined.”
United have their own problems at the back, with centre-back Eric Bailly still out with an ankle problem, while right-back Antonio Valencia is a doubt, per Helen Rowe-Willcocks of The Sun.
Pieters is just one of many Stoke defenders on the injury list.Alex Livesey – Danehouse/Getty Images
Mourinho can still call on Phil Jones, Victor Lindelof and Chris Smalling in the middle, yet replacing Valencia will prove trickier, particularly without Young. The converted winger is serving the final game of his three-match suspension for elbowing Southampton’s Dusan Tadic.
With issues as the back for both teams, it’s safe to expect goals in this one. United should make home advantage count against a struggling Stoke side still seeking a fresh direction after Hughes’ dismissal.