Erik ten Hag responds to ‘player concerns’ with three Newcastle changes

Manchester United host Newcastle on Wednesday night in the Carabao Cup. Erik ten Hag will hope to have several key players back in his side for the cup tie following a devastating 3-0 loss to Manchester City last weekend in the Premier League.

The Dutchman’s team selection against City came under fire from fans and reportedly players alike. Lisandro Martinez, Luke Shaw and Tyrell Malacia all remain unavailable at the back and have been sorely missed, although Raphael Varane and Sergio Reguilon were cleared to play on Sunday.

Despite having both men at his disposal, Ten Hag chose to start Jonny Evans next to Harry Maguire joined by Victor Lindelof on the left-hand side. According to The Sun, a few players were left baffled by the starting XI with the decision to play Lindelof over Reguilon at left-back and Fernandes instead of Antony on the right wing of particular concern.

In light of the backlash, it is expected that Ten Hag will make three major changes to the team that lined up against City last weekend. Lindelof, Evans and Christian Eriksen are all expected to be dropped for the Newcastle game while Varane, Reguilon and Antony are likely to return to the fold.

Eriksen’s exclusion will allow Fernandes to move into the centre of the park where he is far more effective while Antony will slot in at right wing. Besides those three changes, United are expected to field a similar team barring any opportunities given to academy players in the cup.

Casemiro and Aaron Wan-Bissaka are doubts ahead of the match but could get some minutes under their belts off the bench after returning to training recently. Meanwhile, Amad Diallo, Mallacia, Shaw and Martinez have all been ruled out of contention due to injury.

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There have been calls from the United faithful to give Altay Bayindir a chance between the sticks but it is likely Ten Hag will stick with Andre Onana as he continues to adjust to life at Man Utd. While injuries mean that the Red Devils don’t have much choice but to start Maguire at centre-back.

Predicted Man Utd XI: Onana; Dalot, Varane, Maguire, Reguilon; Amrabat, McTominay, Fernandes; Antony, Rashford, Hojlund

Injuries: Diallo, Martinez, Malacia, Shaw

Doubts: Casemiro and Wan-Bissaka

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