Fulham vs Manchester United
Premier League top-four hopefuls Manchester United take a trip to Craven Cottage to encounter promoted Fulham in their final game ahead of the World Cup break.
Despite carrying a reputation as an archetypal ‘yo-yo’ club, Fulham’s impressive 14-game Premier League start (W5, D4, L5) threatens to tarnish that unwanted legacy. Manager Marco Silva has had a week to rally his troops following a heartbreaking 2-1 defeat at Manchester City, which hindered his side’s promising patch of four unbeaten league matches (W2, D2). The ‘Cottagers’ have proved they’re no pushovers, especially on home turf, where they’ve only lost one of their seven top-flight outings this term (W3, D3). However, their inspirational home form may not stand the test of time, as they’re about to take on a Man Utd side they’ve failed to beat across their last 13 Premier League H2Hs since back-to-back wins in 2009.
In the meantime, Manchester United brought the phrase ‘revenge is a dish best served cold’ into life over midweek, pulling off a phenomenal second-half comeback to topple Aston Villa 4-2 in the EFL Cup third round. But it’s a small consolation for the Old Trafford faithful following last week’s 3-1 demolition at Villa Park, which threw a spanner in the works of Erik ten Hag’s bid to steer United back into the Premier League top-four picture. After their nine-game unbeaten competitive run (W7, D2) ended abruptly at Villa, the ‘Red Devils’ will be out to get back to winning ways in the Premier League. Craven Cottage could prove a happy hunting ground for Man Utd, at least considering they’ve lost just once in their last 18 league matches against promoted teams (W11, D6).