Man Utd news: Erik ten Hag can put pre-season discovery to the test vs Nottingham Forest | Football | Sport

The Red Devils can count themselves fortunate to have collected three points from their first two Premier League matches this term. Wolves were much the better team when they lost 1-0 at Old Trafford earlier this month, before Tottenham humbled Ten Hag’s side in north London.

For all his talent, playing Rashford as a central striker is not paying off. The 25-year-old is yet to open his account this season, having scored for fun while playing off the left in 2022/23.

Striker Rasmus Hojlund may be in contention to make his debut against Forest after recovering from a back injury, but it would be a surprise to see Ten Hag throw the youngster straight in from the start.

Anthony Martial may also fancy his chances of starting centrally, but senior United figures are rumoured to be losing faith in the Frenchman’s capabilities. It may be time, at least temporarily, for Ten Hag to rely on Sancho instead.

United fans have grown tired of the 23-year-old struggling in wide areas since his £73million move from Dortmund in 2021. As Ten Hag discovered in pre-season, playing him centrally could be the answer.

Former Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho is among those to have cast doubt over Rashford’s ability to lead the line on his own. And even the player himself has admitted that coming in from the left-hand touchline is where he is at his best.

For all his shortfalls since arriving at Old Trafford, Sancho is still a tricky player to deal with when passing angles open up in and around the box. Success would be far from guaranteed, but United’s dismal start should prompt Ten Hag to start mixing things up against Forest.

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