Manchester United battle Copenhagen in the Europa League quarter-finals on Monday evening as they target to move closer to a second triumph in the competition in three years.
Courtesy of a comeback win over Istanbul Basaksehir, Manchester United Danish opponents has reached this stage of the competition for the first time in their history.
Moreover, after an exhausting end of their domestic fixture, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer grabbed the opportunity to rest his star men for the second leg of their last-16 tie with LASK Linz.
Leading with a 5-0 from the opening fixture, United sealed their progress with a scrappy 2-1 victory courtesy of goals from the Englishman Jesse Lingard and Frenchman Anthony Martial.
As well as handing much-needed minutes to his backup players, their performance would have strengthened Solskjaer’s feeling that a gap has emerged between the first XI and the rest of his squad.
While a below-par showing was mainly down to a lack of sharpness, none of the nine outfield players who came into the team staked their claim for a role on Monday evening.
Nonetheless, less uncertainty over his selections may suit Solskjaer at this stage of the season as the Red Devils bid to live up to their tag of competition favorites.
Although the draw has no doubt been kind to the Premier League club, they will have to be wary of Copenhagen relishing the opportunity of playing without any pressure on their shoulders.
Stale Solbakken has made wonders to get the club to this stage only suffering two defeats in 10 matches since the beginning of the group stages.
Similar to their opponents, the draw has been kind. But Copenhagen were underdogs heading into their knockout ties against Celtic and Istanbul Basaksehir.
Their most recent success, by a 3-0 margin on Wednesday came after they lost their first leg in Turkey which represented the second tie in succession where they have recovered from poor results in the opening fixture.
With this in mind, facing Manchester United in a one-off contest in Cologne will suit the team as former Wolves boss Solbakken looks to remind people in England of his coaching skills after his disastrous spell at Molineux.
Brandon Williams will replace Luke Shaw at the left-back as the senior player continues to recover from an ankle injury.
Of the other nine outfield players, Harry Maguire will retain his place while Paul Pogba, Bruno Fernandes, Mason Greenwood, and Marcus Rashford all returning to the side.
On the other hand, Solbakken is expected to make minimal changes to his first XI after their impressive show on Wednesday.
Guillermo Varela will line up at the right-back as Jonas Wind is regarded as one of Copenhagen’s danger men after scoring twice and providing an assist against Basaksehir.