Time for Van de Beek?

The doubts over Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba have increased the chances of a first Premier League start for Donny van de Beek, impressive in another midweek outing against Istanbul Basaksehir.

If McTominay was fit for today then the safe bet would have been on him lining up with Fred against a side fifth in the Premier League and one of the standout visitors to Old Trafford during Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's reign.

Solskjaer has a fine line to tread between underestimating and overestimating Southampton. Neither Van de Beek nor Fred can be categorised as 'defensive-minded', either, so Nemanja Matic could return after his pointless pick against West Brom and, seeing as Fred is undroppable, Van de Beek's wait could continue.

Cavani coming in?

Mason Greenwood's rusty cameo against Basaksehir and Juan Mata's underwhelming performance could convince Solskjaer to stick with Edinson Cavani, lively in midweek, for what would also be his maiden Premier League start.

United have had the benefit of a five-day gap between European and domestic matches and Cavani's conditioning has been managed carefully after he went over seven months without playing.

Southampton's intensity has troubled United in the past and that could count against the 33-year-old Cavani, even if it would mean restoring the profligate Anthony Martial to the centre forward role.

Back-up options

Solskjaer's matchday squad will be whittled back down to 18 players on Sunday after 23 were picked on Tuesday night. Pogba and McTominay were both absent but three of the five substitutes introduced started in United's Europa League semi-final defeat to Sevilla.

The talk of squad additions on Friday prompted Solskjaer to lament the 18-man domestic rule and, even accounting for the probable absences of Pogba, McTominay and Luke Shaw, there is still unlikely to be room for Eric Bailly, Jesse Lingard or Odion Ighalo at Southampton.

Four in a row?

If we are to be pedantic, then the last time United won four matches in succession - and in the regulation time of 90 minutes - was in January 2019, when Solskjaer was still the caretaker manager and had presided over eight wins from his first eight games.

The five-game streak Southampton ended in July included the slog at Norwich, where United needed extra-time to reach the FA Cup semi-final.

Manchester United returned to winning ways in the Champions League with a 4-1 victory over Istanbul Basaksehir at Old Trafford.

Bruno Fernandes' brace set Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side on course for a third successive win, with Marcus Rashford and Daniel James also on the scoresheet.

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De Gea to bounce back?

For the first time this season David de Gea was solely blameworthy for a goal against Istanbul Basaksehir. His positioning with the free-kick suggested he was expecting a right-footer and the left-footed Deniz Turuc caught him out.

De Gea's surprise selection ahead of Dean Henderson was not remotely controversial, given the final score, but if he commits another error at Southampton the pressure could begin to mount.