Mark Lawrenson states his prediction for Aston Villa v Man United

Mark Lawrenson looks ahead to Manchester United's trip to Aston Villa in the Premier League on Thursday night

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
Manchester United legend Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Photo: Screengrab)

Mark Lawrenson is backing Manchester United to claim a 2-0 win at Aston Villa on Thursday night to continue their recent good form in the Premier League.

The Red Devils have been earning lots of praise for their performances in recent weeks following the return of top-flight football in England after the coronavirus pandemic.

Manchester United have won their last three games on the spin in the Premier League to leave the Red Devils in fifth place in the table as they look to try and catch Chelsea FC in the race for Champions League qualification.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were in particularly impressive form on Saturday when they claimed a dominant 5-2 win over Bournemouth in the Premier League at Old Trafford.

Manchester United still have a decent chance of securing a spot in next season’s Champions League via a top-four finish.

And former Liverpool FC defender Lawrenson is expecting to see the Reds claim all three points on Thursday night when they head to Villa Park.

Writing in his column for BBC Sport, Lawrenson said: “Villa were unlucky to end up empty-handed at Anfield on Sunday.

“They were well organised at the back and tried to get men forward on the break when they could, just without creating many chances.

“It could quite easily have stayed at 0-0 though, and that game was the perfect example of where the bigger club with the better bench was able to make substitutions to win the game.

“Liverpool could do that because, since football restarted amid the coronavirus pandemic, teams are allowed to use five subs now, instead of three.

“I don’t think there was any need to make a change to the laws of the game there whatsoever, and what it does is give all the top teams with more depth in their squad an extra chance to make that quality count.

“It is a factor in why the bottom four have picked up so few points since the restart, and it is another problem for Villa in this game too.

“United have got so many options up front, and if things aren’t working for them they can just bring someone else on instead.”

Manchester United have won four of their last five games in the Premier League and the Red Devils seem to have been buoyed by the signing of Bruno Fernandes from Sporting Lisbon in the January transfer window.

After Thursday’s game, the Red Devils will take on Southampton and Crystal Palace in the Premier League, before they turn their attentions towards their FA Cup semi-final clash with Chelsea FC at Wembley on Sunday 19 July.

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