And so it begins! The clubs have had little time to get things in order after the World Cup and even lesser time to bring new signings up to speed with the style of play. So expect the World Cuppers and deadline day signings to sit out and watch from the stands as the English Premier League gets underway at Old Trafford with Manchester United hosting Leicester City. United have injury crisis to deal with and manager Jose Mourinho hasn’t been pleased with transfer activity. At the other end, Claude Puel will miss Jamie Vardy and Harry Maguire following the World Cup also Riyad Mahrez who finally moved to Manchester City. Catch live scores and updates from Manchester United vs Leicester City.
FULL TIME! Manchester United 2-1 Leicester City. No United victory is ever complete without some tension in the end and that was the case here too. Leicester won a corner in the last 10 seconds and Schmeichel came forward. The corner kick was directed at him and he got a head to it but it only bounced outside. The referee blew the whistle after that.
GOAL! Manchester United 2-1 Leicester (Vardy 90 + 2 mins) Manchester United go to sleep at the back and Leicester take advantage. A Ricardo cross that comes off the post, Vardy is there to turn it in.
90 mins: Four minutes added on. Ricardo lofts the ball to Vardy who is in space inside the box, he vollies it and the ball soars over the bar.
GOAL! Manchester United 2-0 Leicester City (Shaw 83 mins): Luke Shaw finally scores his first Manchester United and what a goal it is! Mata dinks it across to Shaw who seems to have made a mistake controlling it first time, but he chases it and jabs it past Schmeichel into the far corner. Soon after the goal, Fellaini comes on for Pogba.
80 mins: Leicster make a final change: Iborra comes on for Adrien Silva. Meanwhile, it looks like Jose Mourinho is preparing to bring on his main man, Marouane Fellaini.
77 mins: Sanchez puts it to Lukaku who is free as a soaring eagle inside the box, Schmeichel rushes in and manages to save a rather underwhelming shot from Lukaku. That should have been burried.
75 mins: Vardy dispossesses Shaw, puts in a low ball into the box, Gray latches on to it and De Gea gets down in time to make the save.
66 mins: Manchester United change now: Rashford off for Lukaku. Rashford had a rather quiet match.
63 mins: Leicester make changes: Amartey off for Ghezzal, Madison off for Vardy. Leicester have had their opportunities but they are lacking decisiveness in the final third.
KICK OFF 2ND HALF: United get the second half going. Maguire’s mistake allows Rashford to make a run down the right but his pass inside is cut out by Amartey.
HALF TIME! Manchester United 1-0 Leicster City. Pogba’s penalty is what separates the two sides.
43 mins: United manage to thread a few passes together after doing nothing more than sitting back and inviting pressure. Shaw got close to scoring but Schmeichel managed to get the edge of a finger to it and saved it.
31 mins: United free kick that Madison takes. It crashes onto an unfortunate head in the wall.
28 mins: Madison with a piledriver of a shot that De Gea saves, United manage to kick it out for a corner. It is defended by United but Ricardo sends in another 30-yard shot, it takes a deflection and goes over the bar.
20 mins: Fred with a cross into the box looking for Sanchez. The ball comes out to Pogba who tries to line up a shot but it dispossessed in the end.
14 mins: Gray delivers a ball to Iheanacho who is could only put the ball accross the face of goal. Moments before that Chillwell tried a shot a fair distance away from goal and De Gea made the save without too much trouble.
13 mins: Leicester dominating possession now but they haven’t really done much with it so far. Chillwell drove to the left but was denied any time for a cross by a brilliant Bailly tackle. Demarai Gray then managed to deliver a cross from the left and that was cleared by United.
9 mins: Madison swings in a free kick at an angle from the left, no Leicester shirt near it and the ball is cleared. The game has slowed down a bit but United remain dominant.
4 mins: Schmeichel comes out of his area to boot the ball away before Sanchez can get to it. Sanchez had earlier taken a shot from the left inside the box aimed at the far corner and Amartey seems to have used his hands while blocking it.
GOAL! United 1-0 Leicester (Pogba 3 mins): Sanchez draws the spot-kick and Pogba coolly slots it home. United’s season is up and running.
KICK OFF: Leicester City kick off the 2017/18 Premier League season, United take possession and pass it all the way back to De Gea.
Manchester United are playing a 4-4-3 with Rashford starting as centre-forward. A very interesting line up this. Leicester City have a 4-5-1-1 with Madison playing in behind Iheanacho up front.
They are in the tunnel. Leicester are first there with United being led out by Pogba about half a minute after the away side line up. Until the match starts, you can read this preview we have running of the Premier League 2018/19 openers.
Manchester United: De Gea, Darmian, Bailly, Lindelof, Shaw, Fred, Andreas Pereira, Pogba, Mata, Rashford, Sanchez. Subs: Lukaku, Martial, Smalling, Grant, Young, Fellaini, McTominay.
Leicester City: Schmeichel, Amartey, Morgan, Maguire, Chilwell, Ndidi, Adrien Silva, Ricardo Pereira, Maddison, Gray, Iheanacho. Subs: Evans, Vardy, Albrighton, Ward, Iborra, Fuchs, Ghezzal.
Hello and Good Evening! Welcome to our live coverage of the English Premier League which gets underway at Old Trafford with Manchester United facing Leicester City. United are dealing with personnel issues with Nemanja Matic, Antonio Valencia and Diogo Dalot, Marcos Rojo out injured. World Cuppers Ashley Young, Jesse Lingard, Marouane Fellaini and Paul Pogba joined in late and could only be on the bench. Marcus Rashford could lead the line alongside Alexis Sanchez. Expect Fred to make his Premier League debut. For Leicester, they will be without Vardy and maybe Maguire who was heavily linked with United, or wanted by Mourinho, but the Foxes ruled out the move.
Jose Mourinho, who will be without the likes of Nemanja Matic, Antonio Valencia, Ander Herrera and Marcos Rojo on Friday, once again bemoaned the lack of preparation time for the start of the season, with many of his players having just returned to training after taking time off following the World Cup. “The target is Leicester match and the tactics to be changed in Championship Manager you can just press a button,” he said. “In football you need time to work and players on the pitch to work and we didn’t have until now. Leicester City will adopt a more possession-based game this season instead of their traditional counter-attacking style but will not find the transition easy when they visit Manchester United on Friday, goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel has said. Leicester showed glimpses of the switch last season after Claude Puel took charge of the club in October but attempting to take the game to United at Old Trafford in their Premier League opener will be a challenge, the 31-year-old Dane conceded. (Source: Reuters)