United Injury Report vs Everton: Lukaku, Ibrahimovic, Valencia, Darmian

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Happy new year football fans, here’s the match injury and fitness report as Manchester United visits Everton on the very first day of 2018.  It’s a loaded one as there are many fitness and injury situations to cover. Let’s get right to it, starting with Romelu Lukaku- this was to be his first game at Everton as a member of the opposition since 2013.

That’s not going to happen now as he suffered a head injury and got stretchered off the pitch yesterday. According to Sky Sports, the Belgian will miss at least two games due to this setback.

That’s really a tough break for the 24-year-old as this was obviously a “circle the date” affair.

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For the United starting XI prediction go here.

Elsewhere in the striker position group, Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been ruled out a month due to a reoccurrence of his knee injury. Thus United have nothing short of an injury crisis at the center forward position, and that’s really unfortunate when you consider how they lack creativity in the final third to begin with.

United just don’t have the finishers that the other big six teams have.

Paul Pogba urged his teammates “to wake up” after the Saints result, and rightly so.

In midfield, Marouane Fellaini and Michael Carrick have been ruled out for the entire festive period. Shifting over to the back line, right back Antonio Valencia is expected to miss out yet again, while Chris Smalling and Matteo Darmian are doubts. The duo has missed the last two games. Eric Bailly remains out, with a return possible in February or March.

Flipping over to the home side, Big Sam will be without plenty of key players as well. Allardyce will not have the chance to select Leighton Baines, Maarten Stekelenburg, Ross Barkley, Ramiro Funes Mori and Seamus Coleman in this one.

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Odds: Everton FC- 19/4, Man Utd- 3/4, Draw- 13/5

Prediction: United 1, Everton 1

As always, feel free to post your own Man United and/or Leicester starting XI prediction, as well as your forecast for the final score.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes regularly to WGN CLTV and the Tribune company’s blogging community Chicago Now.

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