With less than ten Premier League games remaining of the season, Manchester United have left themselves every possible chance of securing a top four-finish after a dreadful first-half of the campaign. The Red Devils have been a completely different outfit since the appointment of Ole Gunnar Solskjær, who has only tasted one league defeat since taking over from Jose Mourinho.
That solitary defeat at the hands of Arsenal not only ended Solskjær’s unbeaten record, it has blown the race for the Champions League spots wide open. Coupled with Tottenham Hotspur’s wobble throughout March, there’s going to be many twists and turns between now and the end of the campaign and we’ve identified five games that could well define their entire season.
Wolverhampton Wanderers (A) 2/4/19
Some might say that Wolves are this season’s surprise package, but in reality, they were always going to make a strong impression this season. Nuno Espirito Santo’s side are just outside the top six and have an array of talent they can call upon. From United’s perspective, they can expect a tough gig at Molineux and although they’ll be expected to clinch a win, every player will need to stand up and be counted for.
Barcelona (H/A) 9/4/19 & 16/4/19
No matter what United supporters make of the Champions League draw, they’ll have a monumental task navigating their way past Barcelona. The Spanish giants were paired with Solsjkær’s side and they’ll square off at Old Trafford in the first-leg, and this will prove the Norwegian’s biggest test to date. The Red Devils will need to be at their very best to have any chance of progressing to the semi-finals, but the tie has all the ingredients to be a classic.
Everton (A) 21/4/19
The blue half of Merseyside haven’t lived up to their billing this season, but their slight upturn in fortunes will suit them perfectly ahead of the visit of United. Goodison Park will be packed out to the rafters and if United can craft out the win, they’ll remain in the race for a top four finish with just four league games remaining. Once again, it won’t be easy against Everton, but Marco Silva’s side are susceptible to losing on home turf, with five defeats on their own patch this season.
Manchester City (H) 24/4/19
If there’s one game that could dictate United’s finish to 2018/19, it’ll be the crunch Manchester derby against neighbours City. Pep Guardiola’s side have really ramped it up in recent weeks and are locked in a fight with Liverpool for the Premier League crown. The Red Devils will be absolutely gunning for the three points, even if it helps out their arch-rivals on the red half of Merseyside. It really does promise to be one of the best Manchester derbies in years, with so much up for grabs for both sides.
Chelsea (H) 28/4/19
West Londoners Chelsea are the penultimate visitors to Old Trafford at the end of April, and so much could be decided with the outcome of this game. Both sides will be firmly locked into the race for the Champions League places and the game could literally contain everything you’d come to expect. It’s likely that Arsenal and Tottenham will still be very much in the mix at this stage so a positive result is an absolute necessity. No matter what happens in these five games, there’s no denying they’re the standout fixtures that will shape United’s season. Next season, expect Solskjær’s side to be back in the title reckoning, but before then, check out all the Premier League markets on Betfair.