PSV Eindhoven return to the Champions League group stages on Tuesday as they host Manchester United in a mouthwatering tie at the Philips Stadion.

  • By Michael Bell
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psv de jonIts been almost six years since PSV last played in the group stages of the Champions League, but club football’s biggest competition returns to the Philips Stadion on Tuesday with English giants Manchester United making the trip to Eindhoven.

PSV go into the game still unbeaten this season and confident after a 6-0 drubbing of Cambuur at the weekend which saw Luuk de Jong score a first half hat-trick. Coach Phillip Cocu has now challenged his team to attack and go for the win against Manchester United

Cocu said, “I think we should respect each opponent, but we are not afraid of Manchester United,”

“We have no intention of throwing in the towel before we even get started. On the contrary, we want to make the most of this opportunity.

“These are the kinds of games everybody is really looking forward to. It was the same for me back in the days. We might have to slow down some of the players rather than motivate them. I think it is very important that everybody keeps a cool head. You have to remain focused. Details will be decisive.

“We are not going into the game thinking that we are likely to lose. That’s a negative approach. Our goal is to bag the full three points here, but we cannot afford to be naive.”

Manchester United also go into the game after a big win, as Louis van Gaal’s side saw off arch rivals Liverpool 3-1 at the weekend to move up to third in the Premier League table.

All eyes will be on Memphis Depay who returns to the club he inspired to the Eredivisie title last season with 28 goals in 40 appearances, but with his start at Manchester United not going to plan so far, the winger will be hoping to prove his doubters wrong against his former teammates.

Team News

PSV will be without injured duo Adam Maher and Jetro Willems for the tie, while long term absentee Florian Jozefzoon is also out. It is likely Cocu will stick to the same side that hammered Cambuur at the weekend with Hector Moreno in the centre of defence, and Jorrit Hendrix alongside Andres Guardado in midfield.

Likely PSV line-up: Zoet, Arias, Brenet, Moreno, Bruma, Hendrix, Guardado, Propper, Lestienne, Narsingh, De Jong

Manchester United will be without Wayne Rooney, who is suffering from a hamstring injury, while Phil Jones will also miss the game.

Likely Manchester United line-up: De Gea; Darmian, Smalling, Blind, Shaw; Carrick, Schweinsteiger; Mata, Herrera, Memphis; Fellaini.

Head to head

PSV fans will have fond memories of the last time the Red Devils visited back in 2000 when goals from Wilfred Bouma, Mateja Kezman and Mark van Bommel gave the Eredivisie champions a 3-1 win over Sir Alex Ferguson’s side, who underestimated their Dutch opponents.

However Manchester United got revenge in the reverse fixture with a 3-1 win at Old Trafford, while they also knocked PSV out of the UEFA Cup in the 1984/5 season with a 1-0 aggregate victory.

Form this season

PSV: WWDWDW

Manchester United: WLWDWW

Key Match-ups

Santiago Arias v Memphis Depay

Best of friends when at the club together, Memphis and Arias will line up on opposite sides on Tuesday. Memphis hasn’t been in great form so far this season, but his one outstanding performance came in the previous round of this competition when he netted twice against Club Brugge. Back on home soil and in front of a crowd that adored him, will Memphis be the catalyst for victory, or will Arias do what former PSV boss Aad de Mos predicted, and shut down the winger?

Daley Blind v Luuk de Jong

De Jong has started the season in good form with five goals in the Eredivisie so far and he will be PSV’s biggest threat on Tuesday. De Jong will hope to use his height advantage to get the better of his international teammate Daley Blind, who has been identified as a possible weak link of the Manchester United side. If Lestienne and Narsingh can get in good service from the wings then De Jong may just have a night to remember.

Marouane Fellaini v Hector Moreno

At the other end Manchester United will also use a tall battering ram of a forward in the shape of Fellaini, who will likely keep his place in the starting line-up ahead of Anthony Martial. Memphis and Juan Mata will aim crosses into the big Belgian and centre back Hector Moreno will need to be in good form alongside Jeffrey Bruma to prevent Fellaini scoring.

Who to watch out for

Jorrit Hendrix

The 20-year-old battling midfielder came in for the injured Adam Maher against Cambuur at the weekend and put in a magnificent performance, winning 100% of his tackles and completing 97% of passes. Up against much tougher opposition in Manchester United, can the youngster impress again?

Anthony Martial

The £50 million striker came off the bench to net on his debut against Liverpool at the weekend and Manchester United fans will be hoping to see more of their new Frenchman against PSV.




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