Eric Bailly, Marcus Rashford & Jesse Lingard Manchester United Man United
Man United Eric Bailly, Marcus Rashford & Jesse Lingard

Man United take on Chelsea in the Premier League on Sunday and according to Paul Merson, the Blues are heading for an easy win.

The pundit has predicted a comfortable Chelsea win on Sunday primarily because Man United are a team without a plan and with Ronaldo up front, the OT outfit won’t be able to play the way they actually want. A win for Tuchel’s side means they will be able to hold onto their top spot on the table whereas Man United could slip into the second half of the table.

He wrote for Sportskeeda: “I can’t see anything but a Chelsea win here. They’ll squeeze and dominate the game, and they’ll probably have about 70 per cent of the ball.

“Manchester United will set up with Ronaldo up front, and he’s not running away from anybody. I’ve seen Manchester United come to Stamford Bridge and win comfortably last season.

“They need pace on the wings, and they need a player like Cavani to press Chelsea high up the pitch. As it stands, however, I think Chelsea will break them down comfortably.

“There are a lot of names floating around the club now, and it’s a joke that it’s coming down to an interim manager for Manchester United.

“They’re not bringing anyone world-class to the club for six months, so they do need someone who knows the club inside out and knows what it means to play for the shirt.

“Manchester United don’t know what they want at the moment. If Watford hadn’t scored those two late goals last weekend, Ole would’ve still been the manager.

“They need to get into the top four this season – let’s be honest, they’re not winning the Champions League.

“Ronaldo will still keep his place in the side under Michael Carrick. At the start of the season, I mentioned that they were further away from winning the Premier League than they were before he was bought. Now, they’re a million miles away.

“Manchester United had a plan last season. They worked hard to keep Edinson Cavani at the club, and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer chased Jadon Sancho’s signature down for the better part of 18 months. With Ronaldo in the team now, they can’t play the way they want to.

“United want to play on the counter-attack, but I don’t see Cristiano Ronaldo closing anyone down. They don’t defend up the pitch, and their back four is completely isolated. I don’t think Ronaldo suits the club at the moment.

“I know he scored against Villarreal – he’s going to score a lot of goals this season. But he’s 36. He’s not the future of Manchester United.

“Manchester United are struggling at the moment. They’ve got no plan, and they don’t have a manager for the next six months.”

Chelsea vs Man United: Can Carrick pull the rabbit out of the hat?

Man United got rid of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer earlier this week and immediately against Villarreal they tried to play the high press game. They tried really hard to win the ball up top but most of the times the Villarreal players were able to bypass the squeeze.

And this was primarily because Cristiano Ronaldo was playing through the middle.

With Ronaldo in the side, there’s no way the United players will be able to execute this high-pressing plan. Someone like Greenwood or Cavani is the ideal forward to be used in such a system while CR7 is an out and out clutch player.

He’s come out as the hero in Europe this season but there’s no way he will be able to dominate the Chelsea defence. The Blues have hardly shown a lapse in defence this season and if the likes of Silva or Rudiger do not flounder then Ronaldo will not even get a sniff.

Chelsea have conceded only four goals this season and to make matters worse Man United will miss several key players on Sunday. So as things stand, if Carrick’s side can avoid an embarrassing result, it will be a job well done.

Read: Man United set to miss six first-team players against Chelsea.

Read: 3-4-2-1 Chelsea’s predicted line up vs Man United: Ben Chilwell out but Lukaku to return?

Read: 4-2-3-1 Man United’s predicted line up vs Chelsea.

Read: 7 top players who could be heading to the Premier League during the January transfer window.