10 games are sufficient to weigh up what you can expect from a season, which is just as well, because there’s every chance we’ll be on zero from three after this one.
To some that will sound overly negative, but it’s just the reality.
There’s been enough in the performances to suggest we can eventually climb the table but equally, enough deficiencies to show we’ll struggle against the better sides.
Rattling in four against Forest will be a morale boost for those involved and if we have Podence and Boly back in the squad our prospects improve, but this is a big ask so early in the Lage era.
Should we get a result, it would offer a real catalyst to get the season properly up and running. Even if we can’t do that, I hope we can at least score a goal.
The draw at Southampton last weekend saw Utd equal the record for the longest undefeated away run in Premier League history, meaning they can move clear by avoiding the L here.
That doesn’t surprise me as they’re a good counter-punching side with a solid defensive setup and pace to hurt teams on the break.
Where they’ve been caught short at times is breaking opposition down that don’t give them those spaces to exploit.
In that sense, Bruno’s Wolves will be a more enticing prospect than Nuno’s, but that’s no guarantee of success.
They were disappointing on the south coast against an unfancied Saints team, but Mason Greenwood made it two goals in two games – having also scored in the 5-1 rout of Leeds the previous weekend – to ensure they got a point.
Summer signings Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho could be handed a start, with big things expected from both of them.
Marcus Rashford, Edison Cavani and Scott McTominay are three notable absentees.
Did anyone play themselves into contention in midweek? Other than possibly bringing in Ait-Nouri for Marcal, I’m struggling to see who might drop out.
I suppose you could argue that using Gibbs-White, Fabio or even Daniel Podence somewhere across the front line could be an option to offer some fresh ideas to the attack.
It was encouraging to see Trincao getting into the box and scoring the other night and we need him in those inside positions more often. Against Spurs, he did some decent things but never threatened the goal.
All the credible transfer speculation seems to focus on us bringing in a high-profile centre half, but I’d still like another attack-minded player.
Last time out
We lost this fixture 2-1 in the final game of last season to a second-string Utd side. Nelson Semedo gave us a deserved equaliser to cancel out their early goal, but after Traore went off injured we were predictably one dimensional going forward and lost to a soft penalty.
In the game at Old Trafford earlier in the season, we acquitted ourselves quite well and were unfortunate to lose with the last kick of the game to a deflected Marcus Rashford goal.
Well done to Ash K who was the only one to correctly predict a 1-0 defeat to Spurs and picks up the first maximum of the season to lead the overall table at the end of Gameweek 2.
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You can read my prediction for the game in the comment section below.
Up The Wolves!