The Red Devils picked up a decisive 3-0 win in the first leg at the City Ground, putting Steve Cooper’s side to the sword.
The equations are fairly simple for them in the second leg at Old Trafford. Just avoid a loss by three goals or worse.
Considering the fact that United are on an 11-game consecutive win streak at home that stretches for over four months, that is unlikely.
Erik ten Hag will motivate his side to keep that winning streak alive with another compelling victory over the Premier League new boys and make their way into their first Carabao Cup final since the 2016/17 season – the last time they incidentally won the competition as well.
Manchester United Team News
Erik ten Hag has been accused of being stingy with rotating his squad this season. That is because he has constantly played a selected core of players in every competition, giving them little to no rest. That has led to Christian Eriksen getting injured in their last FA Cup game against Reading.
Considering that the Danish midfielder was seen walking away from Old Trafford in crutches after that game, it’s safe to say he isn’t playing for them anytime soon.
That could mean Ten Hag is more open to rotation, all while sticking to his attacking style and aggressive 4-3-3 formation.
Jack Butland, who arrived from Crystal Palace on loan, can get his United debut in front of a buzzing Old Trafford crowd.
Harry Maguire, Aaron Wan-Bisskaa and Tyrell Malacia should get to keep their places in the starting XI after a solid performance in the last game.
Lisandro Martinez is in line to return to action, as Ten Hag tries to help him achieve optimum fitness levels after the World Cup.
Fred’s super-sub outing against Reading means he is likely to start this game. So should young midfielder Kobbie Mainoo, who has featured quite a lot in cup games.
United should also field a new-looking frontline as compared to their last few games. Alejandro Garnacho is gunning to start a game, while Facundo Pellistri could also get a rare start at right-wing as Ten Hag wants to keep him beyond the January window.
Starting Line-up prediction for Manchester United:
Butland, Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Martinez, Malacia, Mainoo, Fred, Fernandes, Pellistri, Garnacho, Weghorst
Nottingham Forest Team News
The visitors have a plethora of key injuries holding them. The likes of Taiwo Awoniyi, Omar Richards, Moussa Niakhate, Cheikhou Koyate and Morgan Gibbs-White are all expected to be out for this one.
Forest has nothing to lose in this, so their players will just go for it without even trying to be protective. Former United youth academy graduate Jesse Lingard should get to start against his former side, as he aims to prove why they were wrong to let him go.
Cooper should continue with his 4-3-3 formation as well, trying to take the game to the hosts. Emmanuel Dennis should add more pace and intensity to their frontline, while Neco Williams can start to help add a bigger crossing threat.
January signing Danilo is yet to make a major impact and could choose this one to do just that. Forest know they have a near-impossible task at Old Trafford, but you can never say never in football.
If they give their 100% and capitalize on United’s errors, then Cooper’s men could achieve something really special on Wednesday.
Starting Line-up prediction for Nottingham Forest:
Hennessey, Aurier, Worrall, McKenna, Williams, Freuler, Danilo, Colback, Johnson, Lingard, Dennis