Shrewsbury v Man Utd preview: LVG faces selection nightmare
By Lewis Jones
Last Updated: 22/02/16 6:54pm
Louis van Gaal faces the prospect of having 14 Manchester United first-team players unavailable for Monday's FA Cup fifth-round trip to Shrewsbury.
Goalkeeper David de Gea had a scan on Friday after he sustained a knee injury in the warm-up in the Europa League defeat at FC Midtjylland.
United have also lost Wayne Rooney (knee), Marouane Fellaini (muscle injury), Cameron Borthwick-Jackson (illness) and Matteo Darmian (shoulder) in the last few days, while defender Donald Love - newly promoted to the first-team due to the depleted numbers - is cup-tied.
Paul Merson's prediction
This will be a hard, hard, game for Manchester United, especially with no Wayne Rooney.
His absence worries me. This is a proper FA Cup tie - Shrewsbury will make it that way. They'll need to mix it up.
Anthony Martial and some of the other young kids won't know what day it is going to Shrewsbury. They've had a very tough trip to FC Midtjylland on Thursday in a competition which is their only chance of qualifying for the Champions League.
However, the cream always comes to the top. I know they had a bad result at Sunderland, but United have been playing alright recently.
The advantage United have is that this game won't be at Gay Meadow. Shrewsbury's new ground, New Meadow, is a nice stadium. I've been there - it's a nice place to play football. That's why you don't get too many big shocks anymore. The pitch will be good - as will the facilities.
PAUL PREDICTS: 1-3 (Sky Bet odds 10/1)
The Red Devils have lost just one of their last 45 FA Cup games against lower-league opposition, falling at home to Leeds in January 2010 (W37 D7).
Shrewsbury have won five and lost 14 of their 23 matches against top flight opposition in the FA Cup.
Shrewsbury's last victory over Premier League opposition came back in 2003 versus Everton at home (2-1 in Round 3).
Manchester United have scored 19 goals in their last eight games against third-tier opposition in the FA Cup - at an average of 2.4 goals per game.
Shrewsbury have won all of their previous three FA Cup games; they haven't won four consecutively in the competition since the 1990/1991 season (excl. penalties).
Manchester United have won the last six FA Cup fifth round ties that they have been involved in.
All six of Shrewsbury's goals scored in the FA Cup this season have come in the second half of their games.
Rooney has scored in all of Manchester United's previous four FA cup games, though half of those have been notched from the penalty spot.
The Shrews have kept five clean sheets in their last seven FA Cup games (W5 D1 L1).
Manchester United are odds-on to book a place in the last eight of the FA Cup against Shrewsbury. Pressure continues to mount on United boss Van Gaal, who is odds-on favourite with Sky Bet to be the next Premier League manager to lose his job. United remain 9/2 second favourites to win the Cup with Shrewsbury 500/1 outsiders. Check out tips from our Sky Sports pundits Jamie Redknapp, Charlie Nicholas and Phil Thompson here.