Thursday 19 April 2018

Man United/Arsenal Dream Team – Six Red Devils and five Gunners make combined XI

Manchester United's Juan Mata and David De Gea acknowledge the fans after the game
Manchester United's Juan Mata and David De Gea acknowledge the fans after the game

Premier League rivals Manchester United and Arsenal clash this weekend and here is a select XI based on early season form.

David de Gea (Man Utd)

Two top keepers but De Gea’s agility and reflexes are inevitably sharper than those of the 33-year-old.

David de Gea.jpg
David De Gea

Hector Bellerin (Arsenal)

While Matteo Darmian has settled down very well at United, the young Spaniard’s pace and adventure offers a little more down the right flank.

Chris Smalling (Man Utd)

Thanks to an extended spell in the side, finally becoming a defender of substance. Uses the ball well. Much more confident and commanding.

SOCCER Man _91.jpg
Manchester United's Chris Smalling (right) celebrates with team-mate Memphis Depay after scoring his side's second goal during the UEFA Champions League Group B match at Old Trafford, Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday September 30, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Man Utd. Photo credit should read: Martin Rickett/PA Wire.

Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal)

Wins out ahead of Daley Blind as someone who knows the role much better. That said, the Frenchman has yet to hit the heights of last term.

Matteo Darmian

Luke Shaw would have got the nod had he not suffered that horrific broken leg. Nacho Monreal has been steady, but Darmian has made an excellent start to his O)ld Trafford career. The versatile defender could be a temporary replacement for Shaw at left-back.

Francis Coquelin (Arsenal)

The team always suffers when he’s not there, as proved the other night for Olympiacos’s third goal. Puts out fires before passing quickly.

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Francis Coquelin of Arsenal in action

Morgan Schneiderlin (Man Utd)

Very disciplined in his movement, which must please Louis van Gaal no end. Like Coquelin, does not over-complicate his game.

Juan Mata (Man Utd)

Against all expectations, has managed to thrive from the right flank. A very clever customer who can see the pass and cooly finish the chance.

Anthony Martial (Man Utd)

An absolute revelation who has surprised everyone with his strength, composure and finishing. Beginning to look like a proper centre-forward.

Anthony Martial celebrates after scoring the third goal for Manchester United

Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal)

It may have taken him a while to catch alight but you simply can’t leave this fella out. Brave, tireless and skillful, a dream of a teammate

Theo Walcott (Arsenal)

Answering the call as a central striker. Makes great runs behind defenders and is now converting clinically. Still learning the ropes but doing it well.

Arsenal's Theo Walcott, right, knows he must be more clinical in front of goal

Dream Team (4-3-3): De Gea; Bellerin, Smalling, Koscielny, Darmian; Coquelin, Schneiderlin, Mata; Martial, Sanchez, Walcott

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