Manchester United make the long trip to Kazakhstan, where Astana will be waiting for them on Thursday.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men have already booked their passage into the knockout phase and can still enter the round of 32 as Group L winners.
A win on matchday five, coupled with AZ failing to beat Partizan Belgrade at home, will give the Red Devils that honour. As for Astana, they are playing for pride, having failed to accumulate a single point from their opening four outings.
They are out of contention but will be playing for pride, and could pile more pressure onto an under-fire manager who is expected to roll the dice by handing out several first-team debuts.
Read on for our Astana v Man Utd preview, predictions, team news and TV coverage information.
When is Astana vs Man Utd and what TV channel is it on?
Competition: Europa League
Venue: Astana Arena
Date: Thursday, 28 August 2019
Kick-off: 3:50 PM (UK time)
TV coverage (UK): BT Sport 2
10 Nov 2019: Astana 0-2 Irtysh (Premier League)
07 Nov 2019: Astana 0-5 AZ (Europa League)
03 Nov 2019: Tobol 0-1 Astana (Premier League)
30 Oct 2019: Okzhetpes 0-1 Astana (Premier League)
27 Oct 2019: Astana 5-0 Aktobe (Premier League)
Man Utd (DWWLW)
24 Nov 2019: Sheffield Utd 3-3 Man Utd (Premier League)
10 Nov 2019: Man Utd 3-1 Brighton (Premier League)
07 Nov 2019: Man Utd 3-0 Partizan (Europa League)
02 Nov 2019: Bournemouth 1-0 Man Utd (Premier League)
30 Oct 2019: Chelsea 1-2 Man Utd (League Cup)
Ones to watch
Astana: Abzal Beysebekov
It’s been a wretched Europa League campaign so far for Astana, who are not exactly blessed with a number of top performers in their squad. However, there’s been glimpses of talent, none more so than Abzal Beysebekov. On his day, the midfielder could give Man Utd’s backline something to think about.
Key stat: Beysebekov is averaging 1.8 shots per 90 minutes, which is more than any Astana player in this season’s Europa League.
Man Utd: Mason Greenwood
Mason Greenwood wrote his own piece of Man Utd history last time out in the Premier League, but the majority of the youngster’s goals for the senior team has come in this competition. He’s expected to once again be part of the Red Devils’ Europa League attack from the getgo and must surely fancy his chances against one of the worst defences in this season’s competition.
Key stat: Mason Greenwood is Man Utd’s third-youngest goalscorer in Premier League history.
Firmin Mubele, Zarko Tomasevic and Luka Simunovic will all miss the visit of Man Utd this week due to respective injuries. Roman Hryhorchuk could make a few changes from the side that were recently humbled by AZ.
Confirmed XI: Eric; Rukavina, Postnikov, Logvinenko, Shomko; Beysebekov, Maevski, Sigurjónsson, Sigurjónsson; Khizhnichenko, Murtazayev.
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Solskjaer will rest a number of first-teamers, having taken a squad containing 14 teenagers while leaving the likes of Marcus Rashford and most of his senior players at home.
At his press conference on Wednesday, he confirmed Lee Grant will make his first start for the club – over a year after being signed by Jose Mourinho – having only previously appeared as a substitute in the League Cup. DiShon Bernard (19), Ethan Laird (18) and Dylan Levitt (19) will also be included in the line-up. This, in addition to substitutes, will make for “a fair few” debuts, in the United manager’s words.
The teenage trio of Brandon Williams, James Garner and Greenwood are in the squad and ready to reprise their cup-competition roles.
Confirmed XI: Grant; Laird, Tuanzebe, Bernard, Shaw; Garner, Levitt; Chong, Lingard, Gomes; Greenwood.
Man Utd are expected to play what amounts to an u23 side. Astana will have a healthy dose of motivation, but they are nonetheless a team who have registered one goal across their previous four outings while conceding 14 times. That last figure is beaten only by Luxembourgian outfit Dudelange in Group A.
Scoreline prediction: Astana 0-1 Man Utd