March 12, 2020
Manchester United will return to UEFA Europa League action this evening when they face LASK at the Linzer Stadion in Linz, Austria. The match will be played behind closed doors because of the fears surrounding Coronavirus and the spread which has seen the whole of Italy placed on lockdown in the past 24 hours. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will be seeking to bet a foot into the quarter finals of the competition.
United are on a ten match unbeaten run, scoring 24 goals, conceding two and keeping eight clean sheets. In the Europa League, United are on a good run, playing eight times this season, winning five times, drawing twice and losing once, scoring 16 goals, conceding three and keeping six clean sheets. This sort of form could see United progress into the quarter finals of the competition this season.
LASK, however, also have a good run of form in the competition, playing eight times, winning fives, drawing twice and losing once, scoring 14 goals, conceding five and keeping four clean sheets. United have scored more goals and conceded fewer, which could set them aside from the Austrian team in this round of matches. Granted, they will be seeking to score away from home, sealing the tie at the Theatre of Dreams.
Williams, Bailly, Maguire, Shaw;
Mata, Fernandes, James;
De Gea; Lindelof, Tuanzebe; Pereira, Matic, Chong; Greenwood
Ramsebner, Trauner, Ranftl;
Reiter, Holland, Michorl, Renner;
Tetteh, de Mello, Frieser
Gebauer; Wostry; Balić, Müller, Haudum; Raguz, Sabitzer
United and LASK have never met before with the Austrian side not even playing another English team in European competition. United have played Austrian competition eight times in Europe, winning seven times and drawing once – the most recent matches were played in the 2000/01 season against Sturm Graz at a time where there was a second group stage in the elite European competition – the UEFA Champions League.
LASK started the season in the Champions League, albeit the third round of the qualification stage beating Basel 5-2 on aggregate but falling short with Club Brugge, losing 3-1 on aggregate, entering the Europa League. In the group stages, LASK topped the group winning all three home games in a group containing Sporting CP, PSV Eindhoven and Rosenborg. In the round of 32, LASK beat AZ Alkmaar 3-1 on aggregate.