Predicted XI: Manchester United vs Swansea City – Youngsters given chance by Van Gaal

by Tom Newbold

David de Gea – Manchester United’s No.1 will emphasise his claim on that spot by starting the competitive season in goal.

Chris Smalling – Smalling is an obvious selection on Saturday on the right-side of central defence.

Phil Jones – Jones joins Smalling as an essential pick in a defence bereft of experienced players due to transfers and injuries.

Tyler Blackett – It appears Blackett will be the third of Louis van Gaal‘s central defenders as Jonny Evans remains sidelined with injury.

Ashley Young – Injuries to Antonio Valencia and Rafael mean Young should start in the right wing-back role.

Darren Fletcher – Fletcher will provide the experienced head in a young team.

Ander Herrera – New signing Herrera is set to start in his first competitive game for the Red Devils.

Reece James – Young James may earn a rare start due to the injuries to Valencia, Rafael and Luke Shaw.

Juan Mata – Mata will be relishing the start of a new season in his favoured central attacking role.

Wayne Rooney – United’s new captain will start on Saturday.

Javier Hernandez – Natural striker Hernandez is set to get the nod ahead of Adnan Januzaj up front with Danny Welbeck still injured and Robin van Persie ruled out by his manager.

Formation: 3-4-1-2

Despite injury and squad depth problems, Van Gaal is set to remain with the 3-4-1-2 formation that he has set the side up with during pre-season.

If the Dutch manager opts for more experience than the line-up above he may well start Darren Fletcher in defence with Tom Cleverley taking his place in midfield, but this is unlikely.

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