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Manchester United vs Stoke City: Team news, match preview and prediction

Manchester United are back to winning ways as they welcome a struggling Stoke City to Old Trafford in the early kick-off on Sunday.

After suffering three defeats in eight days last month, Jose Mourinho’s men have now recorded three consecutive wins in all competitions to put that bad spell behind them.

It hasn’t always been convincing though, particularly in midweek in the Europa League against Zorya Luhansk, but against a Stoke side currently sitting in 19th place in the Premier League table, they’ll be confident of getting all three points.

The Potters have yet to win in the league this season, while it’s been 40 years since they defeated United on the road as their rivals have won 15 of their last 16 home league meetings in all competitions.

Team news

Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Luke Shaw are doubts for the hosts due to illness and injury respectively but could recover in time to feature, while long-term absentee Phil Jones will remain on the sidelines, as noted by manutd.com.

As for Mark Hughes’ side, BBC Sport note that Jonathan Walters and Joe Allen are expected to join Jack Butland, Ibrahim Afellay and Stephen Ireland on the list of players missing through injury.

It remains to be seen whether or not Mourinho brings Wayne Rooney back into his starting line-up having left the 30-year-old on the bench the last two games, while there could be a reshuffle behind Zlatan Ibrahimovic who will be going for his seventh goal in 11 appearances so far this season.

Prediction

Manchester United 3-1 Stoke City. Stoke have gone 16 Premier League games without keeping a clean sheet, and I expect that to continue on Sunday.

United looked far from their best against Zorya, but the first-half display against Leicester City after Chris Smalling gave them the lead should set the standard for the rest of the season, particularly at Old Trafford.

United were rampant and gave the Foxes no room to breathe for a good spell in the first half, and they will need to do the same again this weekend which will see them run out comfortable winners.

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