Jose Mourinho has faced some big challenges since taking charge at United – but finding a way to stop Maurizio Sarri’s Chelsea at Stamford Bridge will be right up there.
The Italian, who only succeeded compatriot Antonio Conte on July 13, has made a remarkable start to life in the Premier League and has quickly put his stamp on this team with a high pressing game.
Chelsea have won eight of their opening 12 games under Sarri, scoring 22 goals in the process, and currently lie seven points clear of United in joint top spot.
Sarri has previously admitted it will be ‘very exciting’ to come up against Mourinho and the 59-year-old hoped to draw United in the Champions League group stages with Napoli last season.
Remarkably, the pair have never faced each other on the touchline.
Indeed, Sarri was still working as a middle-aged banker by the time Mourinho made his first steps into management – and is yet to lift a trophy following spells at nine Italian clubs.
When Mourinho was winning a historic treble with Inter Milan in 2010, Sarri was managing Grosseto in Serie B yet the pair meet as big-game rivals on Saturday.
Even with all his vast experience, it will be a step into the unknown for Mourinho.
“I don’t know him,” he told beIN SPORTS in August. “When I was in Italy from 2008-10, he was not in Serie A. I never met him or played against him. I just follow football and lately the good work he did with Napoli.
“In England, all the good managers have the desire to come. It’s a crazy competition with a high level so I think every manager has the dream to come so he had the chance to come.
“He has a fantastic team, fantastic players and squad – I think he has conditions to do good work.”