Week 4 of the 2015-16 Premier League season concludes on Sunday, with Manchester United looking to avenge a pair of humbling defeats suffered in Louis van Gaal’s first season in charge of the club.
[ MORE: Saturday’s full PL roundup ]
Swansea City knocked off the eventual fourth-place finishers not one, but twice during the 2014-15 season (both victories came via a 2-1 score). Elsewhere, Southampton return to league action after a frustrating exit from European competition mid-week.
Southampton vs. Norwich City — 7:30 am ET, on NBCSN and Live Extra
For Southampton, this is a chance to rebound, right the wrongs of the Premier League season’s early days, and set themselves on their merry way for the rest of the league campaign. On Thursday, Saints went out of the Europa League in very unceremonious fashion, having already dropped seven points in the league while focusing their attention elsewhere. For Ronald Koeman’s side, a home date against newly promoted Norwich City might be just what the doctor ordered.
Though, to be fair to the Canaries, they’ve won twice as many points (4) from their first three games as Sunday’s opponents, and scored three more goals (5) while doing so. 21-year-old winger Nathan Redmond tops the scoring charts alongside center back Russell Martin (two goals each). Following an opening-day defeat to Crystal Palace, Alex Neil’s side has rebounded with an away victory over Sunderland and a draw with Stoke City.
For Saints, the injury list is extensive: Victor Wanyama (illness), Sadio Mane (hip), Ryan Bertrand (knee) and Jordy Clasie (hamstring) all figure to be unavailable. For Norwich, it’s slightly better news with only Youssouf Mulumbu (foot) and Martin Olsson (shoulder) out through injury.
Swansea City vs. Manchester United — 11 am ET, on NBCSN and Live Extra
No one at Man United will have forgotten the club’s two defeats suffered at the hands of Swansea City last season, and no one will remember the pair of defeats to the Swans more clearly than Van Gaal. Nor will United’s Dutch manager forget the late nature of either defeat, with the game-winning goals coming in the 72nd and 73rd minutes, respectively.
For United, the start to the 2015-16 league season has been much more kind, as the Red Devils find themselves unbeaten through three games and one of two teams (Manchester City) yet to conceded a single goal on the still-young season. Wayne Rooney bagged a hat trick in UEFA Champions League qualifying action on Wednesday, but he’s still searching for his first league goal of the season. On the other side, Swansea’s no. 1 striker, Bafetimbi Gomis, comes into Sunday’s game with three league goals to his name, with summer signing Andre Ayew a goal back of his total.
United will be without midfielder Adnan Januzaj (hip) and defender Phil Jones (illness) for this one, while the Swans head into Sunday’s clash with a clean bill of health.