- Michael Carrick takes charge of Manchester United after the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
- Defeat for either side could see them drop out of the top two in Group F
- Read below for the latest Villarreal vs Manchester United odds, a betting preview and our pick
Manchester United play their first match after sacking Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on Tuesday, November, 23rd. Michael Carrick is in charge as caretaker manager, and his first task is a tricky one on the road against Villarreal. United are currently top of Champions League Group F with seven points from four matches.
As the United hierarchy search frantically for an interim appointment, Carrick is left trying to right the ship after a humiliating loss to Watford made it just three wins in 11 matches for the Red Devils. They face a Villarreal team which has got its season back on track in recent weeks, losing just once in five matches in all competitions.
Manchester United had to come from behind and required an injury time winner from Cristiano Ronaldo when these teams met at Old Trafford in September. Villarreal have won both of their Champions League matches since then, doing the double over BSC Young Boys.
Villarreal vs Manchester United Odds
|Villarreal vs Manchester United||VIL +0.5 (-165) | MNU -0.5 (-145)||VIL +190 | MNU +145 | DRAW +245||Ov 2.5 (-125) | Un 2.5 (+105)|
Odds as of Nov 22 at DraftKings
Victory for Manchester United will confirm their place in the last 16, but they will have to do it without Luke Shaw, Paul Pogba, Raphael Varane, Edinson Cavani and Mason Greenwood. Harry Maguire is available to start despite a red card at the weekend, however. Alex Telles will deputize for Shaw on the left side of defense, and Eric Bailly may start to get some minutes before Sunday’s clash with Chelsea.
There’s uncertainty over how Carrick will line up. Jesse Lingard and Donny van de Beek (who scored against Watford) could be in contention after being marginalized by Solskjaer, while there might be a change of shape.
Michael Carrick on his future as interim manager for Man United: “I'm prepared to do it for however long it takes – whether it's one game, two games, right now I'm not sure but I'm not thinking about that, it's about tomorrow”. 🔴 #MUFC @mjcritchley
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) November 22, 2021
Villarreal is without Gerard Moreno for Tuesday’s match. Serge Aurier is ineligible. Arnaut Danjuma and Etienne Capoue are doubts after missing the weekend draw with Celta Vigo. Unai Emery might rotate his team here, with Francis Coquelin potentially getting the start in midfield as the Yellow Submarine looks to limit space for Bruno Fernandes to operate.
New Manager Bounce
Carrick isn’t going to bring revolution to Manchester United, but he could still have a positive impact. While the former England midfielder has had very limited time to work with the players as manager, we often see a new manager bounce in situations like this. The relationship between the squad and manager had clearly become a problem under Solskjaer; perhaps a change in the dugout will be enough to improve their performances.
🗣"It was an emotional day, he's a legend at the club and will remain one. He wished us well and said we need to get back on track and he'll be supporting us."
Harry Maguire gives an insight into what Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said to the players before he left Manchester United pic.twitter.com/xxrqDYVi3e
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) November 22, 2021
The flip side, though, is that the structural issues are not going to disappear. Carrick has no managerial experience and has been a part of the coaching staff which oversaw such a dreadful couple of months. Changes to the starting lineup are possible, but this Manchester United team will still be relying on individual quality to carry them past Villarreal.
He’s been my striker when I first came to Old Trafford and he’s been my coach since I came back to Man. United. But most of all, Ole is an outstanding human being. I wish him the best in whatever his life has reserved for him.
Good luck, my friend!
You deserve it! pic.twitter.com/pdm7RXr2RX
— Cristiano Ronaldo (@Cristiano) November 22, 2021
Villarreal outplayed the Red Devils at Old Trafford and was unlucky to leave Manchester empty-handed. Emery’s team have lost just once at home this season and have kept back-to-back clean sheets at Estadio de la Cerámica. They should be able to make it a stressful night for Carrick, though United will be happy to leave with a draw knowing they face Young Boys on Matchday 6.
Villarreal vs Manchester United Champions League Statistics
|11 yellows, 1 red||Cards||8 yellows, 1 red|
|13.8||Shots per match||12.8|
|67%||Shots inside the area||67%|
|+0.41||Expected goal difference per 90||+0.10|
Under 2.5 goals has cashed in Villarreal’s last four games. Their defense will prove difficult for Manchester United to breakdown on Tuesday. Emery’s side are likely to let United have a lot of possession, and will look to hit on the break.
While Carrick could mix things up with his team selection, United are going to find the same issues in possession as they did under Solskjaer. They lack a clear plan to create chances. Villarreal will be happy to keep this low-scoring – a draw puts them in a solid position going into Matchday 6 against Atalanta.
— Villarreal CF (@VillarrealCF) November 22, 2021
The draw is a decent option at +245, but we’re going with Under 2.5.
Pick: Under 2.5 total goals (+105)