Manchester United v Wolfsburg Champions League Match Preview

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After a forgettable night in Eindhoven on match day one of the Champions League group stage, Manchester United will be hoping to return to winning ways on Wednesday when Wolfsburg are the visitors to Old Trafford.


When Memphis Depay put the Red Devils ahead on his return to his former club PSV Eindhoven, it looked like a comfortable night was in store for the men from Manchester. But an horrific tackle on defender Luke Shaw by Héctor Moreno, which resulted in the England international suffering a double fracture of his right leg, visibly effected both coach Louis van Gaal and his players as the hosts came back to claim all three points with a 2-1 win. United are now priced on the best online betting sites at *3.00 to progress from group B and know that they must get points on the board on Wednesday evening against Wolfsburg. Domestically, it’s going well for van Gaal with his side sitting top of the current Barclays Premier League table and the club have an excellent home record against German teams having lost just two out of their 14 meetings.


Dieter Hecking’s side travel to Old Trafford after a week everyone connected with the club would rather forget. First there was that incredible five goals in nine minutes spell by Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski which destroyed Hecking’s team 5-1 at the Allianz Arena followed by the controversial news surrounding the clubs major benefactor Volkswagen. A 1-1 home draw against bottom club Hannover 96 last weekend, hardly did anything to cheer up the locals but maybe a return to European competition has come at just the right time after their 1-0 home win over CSKA Moscow on matchday one. One thing that Wolfsburg fans may need to take note of is that their team has lost on its three previous visits to England.


The unfortunate Shaw is van Gaal’s only injury concern for Wednesday with Antonio Valencia set to continue to deputise at right-back. Highly talented Italian international Matteo Darmian will once again show his versatility by switching over to left-back. The extensive European experience of German midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger should give him the vote over Michael Carrick with young Anthony Martial (*2.37 on the best sports betting sites to be an anytime scorer on Wednesday) looking to continue his rich vein of scoring form up front.

There’s more bad news for Dieter Hecking ahead of the trip to Manchester with midfielder Luiz Gustavo set to miss the game with a knee injury. One definite absentee for the Germans is defender Robin Knoche, ruled out for four weeks after suffering an ankle injury a couple of weeks ago. Former Chelsea man André Schürrle could replace Max Kruse in a three man supporting role behind striker Bas Dost.


Manchester United (4-2-3-1) De Gea; Darmian, Blind, Smalling, Valencia; Schweinsteiger, Schneiderlin; Depay, Rooney, Mata; Martial

Wolfsburg (4-2-3-1) Benaglio; Rodriguez, Dante, Naldo, Träsch; Arnold, Guilavogui; Schürrle, Draxler, Caligiuri; Dost


Incredibly, this fixture falls on the same day as the two clubs first ever meeting at Old Trafford in 2009. The home side ran out 2-1 winners that day. The return fixture in that same season saw a Michael Owen hat-trick sink the home side 3-1 and United’s current coach van Gaal, can boast an impressive personal record against Wolfsburg having played four, winning three and drawing the other. There has been over 2.5 goals scored in the Red Devils last four Champions League outings – the best gambling sites will offer you *1.80 for this to happen again on Wednesday.


Manchester United 1.80 Draw 3.75 Wolfsburg 5.00

*odds courtesy of Bet365

By: Steve Mitchell (@barafundler)