Norwich City welcome Ralf Rangnick’s Manchester United to Carrow Road, boasting a relatively new manager of their own with recent success against Saturday’s opponents.
Dean Smith’s last victory as Aston Villa boss came at Old Trafford at the end of September. Villa parted ways with the 50-year-old after he lost his subsequent five matches at the helm.
A win for Norwich would make Smith the first manager to earn consecutive Premier League victories over United with two different clubs since Kevin Keegan completed the feat in 2002 – though six years passed between Newcastle and Manchester City’s triumphs.
Here’s the XI Smith may deploy to match Keegan’s accomplishment in the space of six weeks.
Tim Krul (GK) – Intriguingly, Norwich’s number one has only kept more Premier League clean sheets against Queens Park Rangers and Swansea City than the four he can boast against Manchester United.
Max Aarons (RB) – At the height of Barcelona’s pursuit of the Canary academy graduate, Aarons’ teammates cheekily addressed him as Dani Alves in training. Unable to prise the 21-year-old away from Carrow Road, Barcelona ended up luring his Brazilian nickname back to Camp Nou.
Grant Hanley (CB) – One of the desperately scarce four goalscorers for Norwich in the Premier League this season – no team in Europe’s top five leagues has registered fewer.
Ben Gibson (CB) – Shifted wider as Norwich matched Tottenham’s three-man defence last weekend, Gibson is set to retain his place even if the formation doesn’t.
Dimitris Giannoulis (LB) – Stepping in for the United loanee Brandon Williams, Giannoulis was hooked at half-time when he last faced a side from Manchester.
Kenny McLean (CM) – A fixture of Norwich‘s last tilt at the top flight, McLean has been an ever-present since his half-time introduction failed to stem the flood of Manchester City goals in August.
Mathias Normann (CM) – The only Canary to have registered a Premier League goal and assist this season has been missed for his work off the ball as much as what he can do on it.
Billy Gilmour (CM) – Touted as a future ‘superstar’ by his club and international teammate McLean, Norwich are counting on their Chelsea loanee realising that potential as they try to claw their way off the foot of the table.
Todd Cantwell (RW) – At this stage of his only other top flight campaign, Cantwell could boast four goals and two assists – he is yet to get off the mark for the division’s lowest scorers this term.
Teemu Pukki (ST) – With five Premier League goals to his name this season, Pukki can match the non-penalty tally Cristiano Ronaldo has amassed domestically so far.
Christos Tzolis (LW) – One of just two teenagers in a Norwich squad loaded with older talent, Tzolis is yet to justify his marquee signing status with a Premier League goal or assist.