The dark cloud surrounding United disappeared almost overnight following Jose Mourinho's departure earlier this month, and Solskjaer has managed to create a feel good factor around the club with two resounding wins, albeit against struggling Cardiff and Huddersfield.
Eddie Howe's Bournemouth have been inconsistent in recent weeks and have slipped to 12th in the table, but are still only two points behind seventh placed Leicester. After a 5-0 hammering at the hands of Tottenham last time out, the Cherries will be aiming to respond by causing a major upset on Sunday.
Where to Watch
|When is Kick-Off?||Sunday 30 December|
|What Time is Kick-Off?||16:30 (BST)|
|Where is it Played?||Old Trafford|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||Sky Sports Premier League|
Solskjaer has confirmed that duo Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku will be available for selection this weekend. Lukaku has been missing for United's previous two games on compassionate leave, whilst the Chilean attacker has been missing with a hamstring injury which was set to keep him out until 2019, but is ahead of schedule having returned to full training this week.
Encouraging news for the Red Devils is the return of top scorer Anthony Martial, who missed United's win over Huddersfield through illness. The Frenchman has bagged eight Premier League goals this season and will add more firepower to Solskjaer's front line this weekend.
The home side will be without defenders Marcos Rojo and Chris Smalling, as well as Scottish midfielder Scott McTominay who are all recovering from their respective injuries.
Howe has a number of long-term absentees to deal with himself. Simon Francis was stretchered off in the defeat to Tottenham last time out – and it has since been confirmed he will miss the rest of the season following a cruciate knee injury. Adam Smith, Lewis Cook and Dan Gosling will all be missing for the Cherries as they head to Old Trafford with a depleted squad.
|Man Utd||De Gea; Young, Lindelof, Jones, Shaw; Matic, Herrera, Pogba; Lingard, Martial, Rashford.|
|Bournemouth||Begovic; D.Rico, Cook, Ake, Daniels; Lerma, Surman, Stanislas, Fraser; Brooks, Wilson.|
With Bournemouth spending much of their existence playing in the lower levels of English football, they have only clashed with Man Utd 15 times. Since their first meeting back in 1949, the Red Devils have managed ten victories - losing just twice, which should stand them in good stead ahead of Sunday's meeting.
The pair met recently in the Premier League - 3rd November to be exact - when Mourinho's United came from behind to claim three points courtesy of strikes from Martial and a last-minute winner from Marcus Rashford.
It is difficult to judge United's recent form - almost everything that went before Solskjaer's reign appears to have been swiftly forgotten. Since the Norwegian took over, United have won two on the bounce and in some style, winning 5-1 and 3-1 against Cardiff and Huddersfield respectively.
Mourinho appeared to have left the Red Devils with huge problems following consecutive defeats to Valencia and Liverpool, but the mood has been lifted around the club and Sunday's meeting should provide a clearer indication to how much United have improved under Solskjaer.
Howe's side had an electric start to the season as they won five of their opening nine Premier League games, but they have been inconsistent recently and have endured heavy defeats at the hands of Liverpool and Spurs in recent weeks.
The Cherries have lost four out of their last five in all competitions and will be aiming to bounce back on the biggest stage of all. With Ryan Fraser, David Brooks and Callum Wilson all in terrific form, Bournemouth certainly have the quality to hurt a Man Utd defence that has looked shaky all season long.
|Man Utd 3-1 Huddersfield (26/12)||Tottenham 5-0 Bournemouth (26/12)|
|Cardiff 1-5 Man Utd (22/12)||Bournemouth 2-0 Brighton (22/12)|
|Liverpool 3-1 Man Utd (16/12)||Chelsea 1-0 Bournemouth (19/12)|
|Valencia 2-1 Man Utd (12/12)||Wolves 2-0 Bournemouth (15/12)|
|Man Utd 4-1 Fulham (08/12)||Bournemouth 0-4 Liverpool (08/12)|
Momentum is very much with the home side, coming off the back of two successive league wins – whilst Bournemouth have just been hammered by Tottenham 5-0. United look to have their swagger back, including talisman Paul Pogba who has rediscovered his form after being frozen out by Mourinho.
With Sanchez and Lukaku returning for the resurgent Red Devils, it could spell a very difficult afternoon for Howe's side - who could be on the end of back-to-back losses. Bournemouth have enough quality going forward to nick a goal, but Solskjaer's men should have enough quality to claim all three points.
Prediction: Man Utd 3-1 Bournemouth