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Man Utd could benefit from Chelsea’s absences as they did against Spurs

Manchester United will be eyeing their first Premier League win in five attempts against Chelsea this evening and they have already been handed a slender advantage.

The Red Devils recently got the better of Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford. Spurs barely threatened the United box as Harry Kane and Son Heung-min struggled to impose themselves.

In the absence of Richarlison and Dejan Kulusevski, the north London side lacked another elite attacker and United fully capitalised on that to secure a comfortable 2-0 win at home.

Against the Blues, they have been handed a similar boost with long-term injuries to N’Golo Kante, Reece James and Wesley Fofana. The onus is now on United to benefit from the same.

Chelsea have a solid deputy for Fofana in the form of Trevoh Chalobah, but the Blues have not been able to replicate the tenacity and work rate of Kante in their midfield when he has been sidelined.

The bigger blow, however, should be the absence of James. It could be one of Cesar Azpilicueta or Ruben Loftus-Cheek starting at right wing-back this evening, but neither possess the same quality.

Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford could have a key role to play for United from the left flank. There will be spaces to exploit behind. We won’t be surprised if Anthony Elanga starts ahead of Sancho.

Sancho’s limited pace on the counter-attack is well known. Elanga is much better than the England star in that aspect. Ten Hag may have a big decision to make on who starts from the left wing.

United have the chance to break into the top four of the Premier League for the first time this season. They must grab their opportunity with Chelsea far from full strength for today’s meeting.

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