When can Marcel Sabitzer make his Manchester United debut and can he play vs Nottingham Forest.

February 1, 2023

Manchester United’s new signing Marcel Sabitzer cannot make his debut against Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday night.

Sabitzer has joined the Reds from Bayern Munich on a loan deal until the end of the season. The 28-year-old, previously of RB Leipzig, has made 54 appearances for the Bundesliga giants since his 2021 move to the Allianz Arena.

However, the Austrian has struggled for game time at the German club and has made the switch to United. Erik ten Hag moved swiftly to sign a central midfielder after it was confirmed that Christian Eriksen would be out for a significant period with an ankle injury.

Eriksen was seen leaving Old Trafford on crutches after the victory against Reading and the Redsconfirmed on Tuesday that the Dane would be out until late April at the earliest. Those wishing to see Sabitzer make his debut at Old Trafford in the League Cup will be sorely disappointed.

EFL rules state that a player must have signed for their club no later than 12pm the previous day to be eligible to play in the competition. Therefore, Sabitzer’s debut will have to wait until the weekend when United host Crystal Palace in the Premier League.

Ten Hag hinted in his press conference on deadline day that Fred will be the player to partner Casemiro in central midfield against Forest in midweek. He explained: “I think you can never fill that (gap) because every player has his own characteristics and identity, another player will always fill in in a different way but it doesn’t mean you have to be less successful.

“It’s quite clear Christian Eriksen brings top quality to our squad and especially, he has some specifics that are hard to replace, for instance his impacts in the final third with his final ball. I think you mentioned already in your first sentence he (Fred)’s playing together with Casemiro in the Brazil squad.

“They have so many choices they can make but they often prefer to play them together and that tells something about the quality Fred has and what he can contribute to the team. He did it on several times.