Premier League Q&A: All the latest from Manchester United plus news from Arsenal and


Mail Sport’s Nathan Salt, Sami Mokbel, Tom Collomosse and Adrian Kajumba answer all the big questions regarding Manchester United, the North London Derby, Aston Villa and Chelsea.

Tom Collomosse is with us shortly

Tom is currently in Warsaw, where Aston Villa are preparing to take on Legia in their opening Europa Conference League group match tomorrow night.

Thanks to Sami

Some nice insights there into Sunday’s clash between Arsenal and Spurs.

Q: Can we get a prediction for Sunday’s NLD?

Sitting on the fence. 1-1!

Q: Mikel Arteta is trying to evolve his Arsenal side – but do you think they’re progressing?

Sami Mokbel: Personally, I think the team is far more equipped than last season to maintain a successful title challenge.

The addition of Rice has given them a solidity in midfield that was perhaps missing last season.

They are a bigger and stronger team this season. Kai Havertz is a prime example of that. His start has been lacklustre, but his physicality, his height have already been key.

Raya’s ability on the ball and calmness he exudes was there for all to see against Everton on Sunday.

Sami Mokbel: I think the Aaron Ramsdale/David Raya conundrum will be one of the most interesting selection aspects of Arsenal’s season. Two excellent goalkeepers. But how do you keep both happy?

Ramsdale started the season, Raya played against Everton on Sunday. Who plays versus PSV tonight?

Having played a key role in helping Arsenal back into the Champions League it would be harsh on Ramsdale to miss out on the club’s return to the competition.

Mikel Arteta can be ruthless, but that must surely be a factor for the Gunners. Moving forward, however, there is an emerging sense that Raya is moving towards being Arteta’s preferred option.

The very fact that Raya was signed from Brentford has put rival clubs on alert. Ramsdale is a fantastic keeper, if he may be available teams would be silly not to at least keep abreast of that situation.

My understanding is that clubs are monitoring the situation closely. But that doesn’t mean Arsenal will sell or Ramsdale will look to leave, of course.

Q: Spurs have scored 13 times in their first five league games, just one less than Man City’s tally. Do you think they have enough up front to compensate for Kane’s exit?

Sami Mokbel: Kane is irreplaceable. That is clear.

But Postecoglou unleashing the shackles has helped unlock goals from other areas of the pitch.

Football under Jose Mourinho, Antonio Conte and Nuno Espírito Santo was defensive minded. As an attacking unit, they suffered as a result.

Under Postecoglou, however, they have had seven different goalscorers already this season. That is very promising.

But the beauty in having Kane in their team was his ability to conjure goals out of nowhere. He is clinical.

The real test will arrive when Spurs aren’t clicking in an attacking sense. When they only have two or three opportunities in a game.

You could generally rely on Kane taking at least one of those chances. Long term, it remains to be seen if they can cope without him.

Right now, however, they are coping without Kane just fine.

Q: How impressed have you been with James Maddison’s start at Spurs?

Sami Mokbel: Maddison looks to be one of the signings of the summer.

I was lucky enough to spend 15 minutes with him at St George’s Park recently and what immediately struck me was how happy and content he was.

It’s no wonder really because his start at Tottenham has been phenomenal.

He is a player that fits perfectly into those Tottenham traditions. Full of flair and attacking qualities.

His family life is settled, recently becoming a father again after his partner gave birth to twins.

Life and football is being pretty good to Maddison right now.

Q: Postecoglou has already endeared himself to the Spurs fans – but is he just in a nice honeymoon period or is there real substance here?

Sami Mokbel: It has been a very promising start, for sure. The supporters are in love with their new manager and by all accounts the players (even those who aren’t playing) are enjoying working under Postecoglou.

The attacking style he has adopted is far more in line with the club’s traditions and that will serve Postecoglou well. The real test will come when they hit a tough patch, which they will because that is inevitable with teams in transition.

But from the opening five games there is plenty to suggest that Tottenham can be a force this season.

Not having European football to play should also help preparations for Premier League matches and help towards keeping players fresh.

Q: Will Arsenal or Spurs be more desperate to lay down an early season marker here?

Sami Mokbel: Wow! Tough first question. Both will be desperate for three points purely because of the opposition. Bragging rights.

For Tottenham, this will be provide the biggest test yet for Ange Postecoglou’s very promising revolution. Beat Arsenal and Spurs fans will truly believe they have turned the corner.

For Arsenal this is about points on the board in the title race as well as having the upper hand over their local rivals.

With that in mind, victory seems more of a necessity for Arsenal. They could be five points adrift of Manchester City by Sunday night.

They won’t want that even at this early stage. That said, I’m sure Spurs fans will disagree!

Sami Mokbel will be with us shortly

We’re going to be discussing this Sunday’s North London derby between Arsenal and Tottenham, who have both made pretty good openings to the season.

Many thanks to Nathan

Thanks a lot to Nathan Salt, some interesting stuff there on Man United ahead of their big game in Germany tonight.

Q: What is your score prediction for tonight?

Nathan Salt: The million dollar question. It’s just so difficult to see United pulling off a result akin to their late show against PSG all those years ago when Marcus Rashford got the winner.

Every Manchester United fan will hope I’m proven wrong but I’ll go with a 3-1 Bayern win.

There just doesn’t seem to be any leadership defensively, Lindelof and Martinez don’t look comfortable as a pairing and Reguilon is still bedding in – plus it’s away from home. Kane will have the bit between his teeth, too, and I fancy him to score.

Q: Who should Manchester United be wary of tonight from a Bayern Munich perspective?

Nathan Salt: The obvious answer is Harry Kane given he’s bagged four goals in five games. But I’m going to go with Leroy Sane.

Last season was dominated by the dressing room bust-up with Sadio Mane that left him with a bruised lip but with the slate wiped clean he looks absolutely lethal in this Bayern 4-2-3-1 system.

The threat of Kane ahead of him is opening up even more space for him to run into and he now looks back to the player that thrived at Manchester City.

Sergio Reguilon is going to have his work cut out tonight if Sane is allowed to get up to full speed

Q: Do you expect a reaction from Manchester United tonight after their 3-1 humbling by Brighton?

Nathan Salt: I do – whether that’s enough to stop the juggernaut that is Bayern Munich I’m not so sure.

Frankly, if it’s more of the same tonight they are risking a hammering and then they come back for a Saturday night late game away at Burnley with the weight of the world on their shoulders.

It’s going to start and end on the midfield battle tonight and if United can stifle that area and get a grip on the game they’ll have a chance.

One thing they can’t do is leave Casemiro as isolated as they have done in recent games. He’s trying to do the jobs of two or three players and not managing to do any that well right now.

Lose badly and Ten Hag will be in a world of pain you fear.

Q: United have a few personnel issues once more ahead of tonight’s clash, what would your formation and line-up would you go for against Bayern Munich?

Nathan Salt: It spoke volumes that United’s 21-man squad for tonight’s game included four goalkeepers… and just five defenders.

It all looked positive when I was down at a rain-soaked Carrington when Raphael Varane and Mason Mount trained with the main group, only for them not to even make the trip to Germany.

The fact Sofyan Amrabat trained on his own suggests he’s not as close as United fans would hope to featuring, either.Ten Hag’s limited options, especially defensively with Aaron Wan-Bissaka injured now, means he’s got no choice but to go unchanged from the weekend with Diogo Dalot at right back, Lisandro Martinez and Victor Lindelof in the middle and Sergio Reguilon on the right.

The biggest tweak they have to make is to ditch the midfield diamond. Go to 4-2-3-1, put Christian Eriksen in a deeper role alongside Casemiro, Bruno Fernandes at No 10, and go for pace out wide with Marcus Rashford on one flank and Alejandro Garnacho on the other, with Rasmus Hojlund through the middle.

Bayern will look to burn United for pace through Leroy Sane and Alphonso Davies and so United have to give themselves a viable out ball on the counter. Rashford and Garnacho will give them that.

Q: Solskjaer spoke about growing egos at Old Trafford during his time, this has been a recurring theme for years it seems. Why do you think this keeps happening at United?

Nathan Salt: It’s a good question and that was an interesting line in his interview.

Whether it’s the pressure that comes with being under the brightest spotlight in English football or whether it’s that players quickly get above their station when pulling on a United shirt is hard to say.

But looking at the Brighton team and the Man United team on Saturday there just seemed to be one team with a clear identity and a buy-in to what the manager is trying to do.

Then there was another team that looked full of individuals in a side that has something of an identity crisis right now.Winning often seems to negate stories like this of ego clashes but United haven’t done a lot of that lately and as I say, one poor result and United always feel on the cusp of meltdown.

Q: Does the failure of those signings highlight the difficulties of managing Manchester United? Some fans are unhappy with Erik ten Hag’s transfer business this summer but should the blame be at the board’s/Glazers’ doors?

Nathan Salt: The more I watch Manchester United the more I sense they are only ever 90 minutes away from a crisis.

It sure felt that way at the weekend and it made me think that managing Manchester United is a beast I’m not sure one man can manage.But in all fairness Ten Hag got players he wanted.

They could have gone for Onana when he left Ajax but waited a year and spent north of £50m on him. Lisandro Martinez arrived last season for £55m.

Mason Mount was a priority target, they got him for huge money.Kane is the one that grates for fans.

Mail Sport exclusively revealed how he was willing to wait for United before they went for Hojlund and now you’ve got a young striker with the weight of the world on his shoulders to deliver.

The Glazers deserve plenty of blame for the toxicity that has now engulfed the entire club but transfer wise, Ten Hag has spent about £400m on players he wanted.

That’s on him – no one else.

Q: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer revealed he wanted to sign five superstars at Manchester United but failed to do so. What impact do you believe those players would have had on the squad? Would he still be in charge? Would they have won more trophies?

Nathan Salt: Erling Haaland. Declan Rice. Moises Caicedo. Jude Bellingham. Harry Kane. Talk about aiming for the top.

Had United got even one of Haaland or Kane, and Bellingham over the line, things would be looking oh so different around Old Trafford now.Bellingham is one of the best midfielders in the world and Real Madrid looked to have landed a bargain for the next decade at under £90m.

Given midfield is one of United’s weakest areas, failure to land Bellingham – who was given a personal tour of Carrington by Sir Alex Ferguson once upon a time – will haunt them for years to come.

As for Haaland, the finest No 9 in world football at Solskjaer’s disposal instead of Anthony Martial? It’s far from a bold proclamation to say he would have silverware in the cabinet and may well still be sat in the dugout for United.

There is a resignation around Old Trafford at the moment that the ‘ones that got away’ list is becoming longer and longer as rivals splash the cash on stars names.

It’s early days on Rasmus Hojlund, who cost £72m, but Solskjaer’s Fab Five list just makes for painful reading for fans this morning.

Nathan Salt is with us now…

Our first questions is coming right up…

Solskjaer isn’t the only one with harsh words…

Our own Oliver Holt has delved into the mystery of just how United managed to miss out on Harry Kane despite their long courtship…

Could Jude have been a Devil?

… Solskjaer certainly thought so, but he chose Borussia Dortmund instead. The Old Trafford icon reveals he had a list of five superstars that he never managed to secure for United. What could have been, eh?

First up, Manchester United…

It’s never quiet at Old Trafford, is it? This morning saw Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tell all about his time in the hot seat and there were plenty of talking points to emerge.

Nathan Salt will be here from 12pm to pick through the Norwegian’s comments…

Good Morning

Hello, and welcome to Mail Sport’s weekly Premier League Q&A.

This afternoon we’ll be hearing from our experts on Manchester United, Aston Villa and all things north London derby.

Get your questions in below by using the comments, and we’ll put the best to our reporters.

Key Updates

  • Q: Solskjaer spoke about growing egos at Old Trafford during his time, this has been a recurring theme for years it seems. Why do you think this keeps happening at United?

  • First up, Manchester United…

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