Manchester United will be sweating on the fitness of Rasmus Hojlund ahead of this afternoon’s Premier League clash against Everton at Goodison Park. The Toffees may also hope Hojlund makes the trip to Merseyside… because the last person they will want to face is his likely replacement.
Erik ten Hag could be without his first-choice striker against Everton after the 1-0 win against Luton Town at Old Trafford last time out was marred by his second-half withdrawal.
Hojlund then dropped out of Denmark duty, intensifying fears that he had added to United’s injury nightmare throughout a troublesome season so far.
On Friday, Ten Hag confirmed that the 20-year-old, who still awaits his first Premier League goal, returned to training this week but remained a doubt for the Everton clash.
He might not be risked ahead of a must-win Champions League Group A trip to Galatasaray on Wednesday, leaving the Dutchman with a decision to make.
Marcus Rashford could move centrally, as he often did across his career-best 30-goal 2022/23 season, with Alejandro Garnacho and Antony on either side.
Or Anthony Martial could be in line for a rare start, having made just two in the Premier League this term. There isn’t a better opponent to start him against.
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Among current Premier League players, not one has scored more goals against Everton than Martial since he landed in English football in 2015.
The 27-year-old has registered eight goals and four assists in 16 appearances against Everton, winning 11 and losing just once.
He has just one goal and an assist to his name in 15 outings this season, which is unlikely to make him an unappealing replacement for Hojlund, who has five goals to his name – all in the Champions League.
But he seems to know how to score against the Toffees, and Ten Hag desperately needs more goals from his attacking department.