europa league

Manchester United to finish the job

Both Manchester United and Club Brugge are coming into their return leg on a good run domestically. Manchester United humbled Watford 3-0 in the run-up to this game. Meanwhile, Club Brugge came away 1-0 winners against a tricky Sporting Charleroi side in the Belgian league. The two sides drew 1-1 in the first meeting which means Manchester United do not have to win to qualify for the next round.

The scoreline also indicates it could be an open encounter, but we feel the home side are up for the task of getting the job done. Manchester United are undefeated in their last six matches. Not since back to back defeats against Liverpool and Burnley have they come away empty-handed.

Many clean sheets

They have registered five clean sheets in their last six matches, with the only side to have scored against them being Brugge in the first leg. United’s 3-0 romp over Watford was a show of newfound confidence and playing at home will give them an added boost. They have lost just two of their last 15 home matches. They are also without defeat in any of their last 12 home matches in the Europa League. United have won four matches in the group stage which was enough to get the job done. It allowed them to let fringe players get a day out when qualification was secured.

With United leading on aggregate on account of their away goal, Club Brugge will have to go for the kill at some point. The form is on their side and let us not forget how they almost came away from Bernabeu with three points against Real Madrid. Brugge have no defeats in their last 10 matches, winning five.

They have not scored as freely as United lately while still maintaining a solid lead in the Belgian top division. They are also unbeaten in five away matches, three being draws. Club Brugge dropped to the Europa League after a poor run in the Champions League and will hope to have an impact here.

History in this competition, however, does not favour them a lot. Club Brugge have two wins in 13 Europa League matches. Away from home, they have no wins in six. Cushioned by their away goal the home side can sit back a let the visitors attack. That will suit United’s style of play excellently and in their current form, a home win is our preferred choice.

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