Man United face Spurs examination

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Manchester United’s credentials as a top-four team in the Premier League will face an examination from Tottenham Hotspur when the teams meet at Old Trafford on Monday, 27 August 2018, kick-off at 21h00 CAT.

United come into the game having suffered a surprise 3-2 loss away to Brighton & Hove Albion this past weekend. The result left the Red Devils in ninth place on the log table, and their status as top-four contenders – let alone title hopefuls – is already being severely questioned.

The calamitous nature of their defeat at Brighton will have left manager Jose Mourinho fuming. The Seagulls played well and deserve credit for their performance, but they had to be little more than competent to overcome a United side which was its own worst enemy – particularly in central defence, where it will be a surprise if either Eric Bailly or Victor Lindelof returned to the starting line-up any time soon.

By contrast, Tottenham Hotspur has enjoyed a quiet but effective start to the 2018/19 campaign, following up a 2-1 away win over Newcastle United with a 3-1 home triumph over Fulham last weekend to be placed fifth on the table.

While Spurs fans will be frustrated that delays to the re-construction of White Hart Lane means they will continue to play their home games at Wembley for the next few weeks and months, they can at least be assured that their team is ticking along nicely.

And the added bonus of seeing striker Harry Kane finally break his August scoring hoodoo is further cause for optimism. Manager Mauricio Pochettino will certainly head to Old Trafford confident that his team is capable of claiming all three points.

United have traditionally dominated their rivalry with Tottenham – claiming 33 wins compared to eight for the London team in 52 Premier League matches – but Spurs have claimed victory in three of their last five league clashes with the Red Devils.

Home advantage has been key to success in this fixture in recent years, with the last seven Premier League meetings of United and Spurs being won by whichever team has been hosts.

Man United v Tottenham – Head-to-head, Premier League

Matches played 52

United wins 33

Spurs wins 8

Draws 11

Last five Premier League meetings

31 January 2018 – Spurs 2-0 Man United

28 October 2017 – Man United 1-0 Spurs

14 May 2017 – Spurs 2-1 Man United

11 December 2016 – Man United 1-0 Spurs

10 April 2016 – Spurs 3-0 Man United