Manchester United have been handed an injury boost ahead of their Wednesday clash against Atalanta.
But the boost does not come from within their own ranks, but instead that of their opponents.
Manchester Evening News reports that Italian club Atalanta have been dealt fresh injuries ahead of their visit to Old Trafford, with four players sustaining relatively new injuries to rule them out of the fixture, and five if you include long-term absentees.
Perhaps the most significant injury is that of Robin Gosens, one of the standout stars of Euro 2020.
Gosens picked up an injury in Atalanta’s last Champions League game against BSC Young Boys in September and has failed to recover in time.
Atalanta will also be without Italian Matteo Pessina, who had to be stretchered off against AC Milan earlier this month.
Centre back Berat Djimsiti will also be unavailable, along with Rafael Toloi who picked up an injury during Atalanta’s 4-1 demolition of Empoli on Sunday. Hans Hateboer is a long-term injury so will not be available until November.
Atalanta are currently on an 11 match unbeaten run away from home, with their most recent result being a 4-1 win away to Empoli. #mufc
— The United Stand (@UnitedStandMUFC) October 18, 2021
However, Man United cannot think that this will be an easy game despite their rivals injuries. Atalanta still have plenty of players who could be more than capable of damaging an already vulnerable United defence.
The likes of Duvan Zapata, Josip Ilicic and Luis Muriel are all capable forwards. And behind them Mario Palisic, a player Chelsea fans will be familiar with, will also be supporting them.
Atalanta are in many ways, a lot like Manchester United, whereby they have bags of talent going forward but tend to concede a lot too. This will be where United must exploit if they are to win.
They have a reputation for playing a fast-paced and entertaining brand of football under Gian Piero Gasperini, and it has seen them progress into the knockout stages of the Champions League in each of the last two seasons.
Under pressure manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will need to find a way to simultaneously nullify Atalanta and kick his United team into gear before an already bad situation starts to decline even faster.