I’d expect David Moyes to field a reasonably strong side in tonight’s FA Cup game away to Derby.
Whilst I do understand the logic behind wanting to see some of our academy players feature, Moyes has a record of treating fixtures such as this seriously.
I would hope to see Flynn Downes feature in his favoured central midfield position from the beginning of the game. I’m not entirely sure if Moyes will rest Declan Rice but I’d certainly expect to see a smattering of first team players, supplemented by some experienced reserves.
Manuel Lanzini should feature and has the ability to thrive in such a fixture, although it is worth pointing out that Derby are in excellent form in League One. Aaron Cresswell could certainly do with the match practice, but central defence is where it is less certain.
With Kurt Zouma injured and Craig Dawson recently departed, it leaves the manager with a slight conundrum. Does he wrap the excellent Nayef Aguerd in cotton wool or keep trying to get him up up to peak fitness?
Run-outs for Thilo Kehrer, Pablo Fornals, Alphonse Areola and Ben Johnson are highly likely.