8 min James loses the ball on the right – I thought he was fouled, but Jon Moss didn’t – and Wolves spring forward to win a corner at the other end.
5 min United have had almost all of the ball in the first five minutes, though Wolves won’t really mind that. They are lethal on the break.
3 min “I like Lingard, he’s a decent player who always puts in a shift,” says Sandile Xaso, “but how much better would this team look with a class act like James Maddison in it? It was startling to see him not only be the best player on the pitch at Stamford Bridge yesterday, but by such a large margin.”
Yes, I really like Maddison, who looks a class act. I suspect he will have a lot of suitors next summer.
2 min A couple of lively early challenges, first from McTominay and then Coady. Both were fair tackles, but they were also meaningful.
1 min Peep peep! Wolves, in the old gold, kick off from right to left. United are in red.
We’re having a few technical issues, but they’ll hopefully be sorted before kick-off. The players have just emerged to the usual cracking atmosphere.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer speaks
“[Dan James] has made an impact from day one. We’ll chop and change at times this season. Andreas played very well last week but we think Dan is the right choice for tonight. He gives us the X-factor of his pace, and he’s incredibly hard working off the ball.
“This is not a happy hunting ground for me – three games here [as a player and manager], three defeats. I was thinking of staying at home tonight! We know Wolverhampton are a tough side; they maybe deserved more than finishing seventh last season. We know they don’t concede many goals and we’ll have to be clinical when we get chances.”
“Do you know if the average age of this United team remains the youngest in this week’s round of PL fixtures?” says Matt Richman. “I have to say I’m impressed with the repeated faith in the team’s youth.”
It is, yeah. It’s also slightly younger than the Chelsea team, with James (21) replacing Pereira (23).
Nuno Espirito Santo speaks
“It’s a big game, a big challenge for us. We did a lot of things well against them last season. I expect a tough game – they are confident, so we have to take care of everything and look for our chance. The answer of the players has been very good [to the extra workload]. The idea is to be united and embrace everything in front of us.”
Daniel James makes his full debut for United, replacing Andreas Pereira. Wolves are unchanged from their last Premier League game, the 0-0 draw at Leicester eight days ago.
Wolves (3-5-2) Patricio; Bennett, Coady, Boly; Doherty, Dendoncker, Neves, Moutinho, Jonny; Jimenez, Jota.
Substitutes: Ruddy, Vinagre, Gibbs-White, Saiss, Neto, Cutrone, Traore.
Manchester United (4-2-3-1) De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw; McTominay, Pogba; James, Lingard, Rashford; Martial.
Substitutes: Romero, Young, Tuanzebe, Mata, Pereira, Matic, Greenwood.
Referee Jon Moss.
Hello. Manchester United have had some unlikely bogey teams down the years. West Brom in the late 1970s; Norwich in the late 1980s; Southampton in the mid 1990s; Middlesbrough in the early 2000s; just about everyone since 2013. Their newest nemesis is Wolves, who tonight are aiming to beat United at Molineux for the third time in less than six months.
Their two 2-1 wins last season – one in the FA Cup, one in the league – sent United into a tailspin after that amazing start under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. They showed the first signs of recovery with a stirring 4-0 win over Chelsea last weekend, but this is a different – and arguably tougher – test.
In those two games last season, Wolves dictated the match by not dictating it – both teams prefer to play on the counter-attack, and Wolves had less of the ball each time. They rode their luck a little in the league, but the FA Cup performance was a masterclass in playing like the away side at home.
They will use exactly the same tactics tonight. It’s up to United to do something about it.
Kick off is at 8pm.