Michael Carrick Wayne Rooney Angel Di Maria Manchester United
Manchester United will need to come up with an improved performance against QPRReuters

Louis Van Gaal has so far been able to keep criticism to a minimum pretty much entirely through his confidence and forceful personality, but even the Dutchman will be unable to prevent scathing criticism from the media and the fans if Manchester United trip up against relegation-threatened Queens Park Rangers in the English Premier League on Saturday.

Manchester United find themselves with exactly the same points as last season under David Moyes, and even if the position is different – they are in fourth with 37 points – the results and performances have not improved as much as everyone expected when Van Gaal took over at Old Trafford.

The manager's penchant to play with three men at the back has come for criticism with Manchester United's forward play rather stunted as a result. While the new formation does help Manchester United take more control, in terms of possession, it does slow down the pace of the attacks considerably, allowing the opposition to easily snuff out the chances.

Southampton showed the limitations of the formation -- a formation which the Manchester United defenders still look uncomfortable playing -- to the fullest extent last weekend when they stayed compact, kept chances to a minimum while taking their own opportunity to come away from Old Trafford with a 1-0 win.

Van Gaal is under pressure to go back to a flat back-four for the trip to QPR, but the manager remains adamant that the decision will not be taken due to pressure, but rather on the availability of his players and the opponents.

"OK, you can see we have not created too many chances in the last three matches but, before that, we played at Tottenham and we had six big chances with the same system," Van Gal told MUTV, defending the three-central defenders strategy.

"It's always dependable on the opponents also but I have to say, in the last phase of our attack, we've failed in the last pass and that is the most important pass. I hope we shall improve that in the coming matches."

Manchester United could not have asked for better opponents than QPR to get over that disappointing Southampton result as the team from London have not beaten the former champs in any competition in the Premier League era, with their last win coming way back on New Year's Day in 1992.

Queens Park Rangers are currently struggling to stay afloat as well, having picked up just 19 points in 21 matches, but they are a much more formidable outfit at home.

Harry Redknapp will hope his side can take advantage of Manchester United's nervousness and instability, with the manager, no doubt, banking on the in-form Charlie Austin to bang in the goals again.

Austin has scored 13 goals in the Premier League this season, and the striker will look to add to that impressive tally against Manchester United at Loftus Road on Saturday.

"We'll have a right go tomorrow, for sure," said Redknapp on Friday. "We'll get at them as best we can and really take the game to them.

"I love football -- and games like this is what it's all about. I'm excited about playing United at Loftus Road. They've spent some serious money and they've got a great squad of players and a top manager.

"But we are at home and we've played very well in front of our own supporters this year. We've shown what we can do at Loftus Road and our results have been good."

Where to Watch Live

The EPL match is scheduled for a 3 pm GMT (8.30 pm IST, 10 am ET) start with live coverage in India on Star Sports 2 and Star Sports HD1. The match can also be watched via live streaming online in India on StarSports.com.

There will be no live coverage on TV in the UK, but viewers can listen to the match on BBC Radio 5 Live or via their website. Watch the game live in the US on NBC Sports, while the action can also be live streamed online on NBC Sports Extra.

Audience in Australia can watch the game on Fox Sports or live stream the action on Fox Sports On Demand, while viewers in Canada can do the same on Sportsnet or Watch Sportsnet.

Viewers in the Middle East and North Africa can watch the match on Bein Sports Arabia or via Live Streaming online courtesy Bein Sports Connect, while South Africa and Sub Saharan Africa viewers can do the same on SuperSport or SuperSport online.