Erik ten Hag's first Manchester United match in charge saw him spring a striking selection surprise and the Dutchman may need to do the same again to keep the Reds' Champions League hopes alive.

United are third in their qualification group after a 4-3 defeat to FC Copenhagen last time out left them with three points from four games. They travel to Turkey to face Galatasaray on Wednesday needing a win to retain a chance of reaching the knockout stages.

And they must travel without Marcus Rashford, suspended after his red card against the Danes, while Rasmus Hojlund is an injury doubt. The striker has hit five goals in four Champions League games this season but missed Denmark's international fixtures and faces a race against time to be fit for the continental showdown.

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If he misses out then the only natural senior striker is Anthony Martial, a player who is out of favour and has shown very little when called upon this term. The prospect of the Frenchman leading the line in a must win encounter doesn't fill many with confidence.

Ten Hag might look elsewhere, as he did on the opening day of last season when he deployed Christian Eriksen as a false nine against Brighton with Cristiano Ronaldo left on the bench. The plan didn't work as United suffered defeat but the Reds have perhaps a more obvious stand-in candidate just now in Scott McTominay.

The midfielder struck seven goals for Scotland during their successful European Championship qualifying campaign, placing him fifth in the goalscoring charts above the likes of Erling Haaland and Bruno Fernandes.

Only Romelu Lukaku, Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe and Harry Kane plundered more than McTominay who plays further forward for his country. The Scot is also United's top league goalscorer this season with three, alongside Fernandes, despite only starting six games.

While he has been used as a defensive midfielder for much of his United career, the 26-year-old is naturally a more attack minded player and played a couple of times up top coming through the ranks.

"As a kid, I was an attacking midfielder – I like to get in the box. I’ve got to keep doing that, I know I can add more goals and assists to my game," he said earlier this season.

Indeed McTominay has shown his capabilities at club level when given the opportunity. He scored twice playing in an advanced role against Leeds United under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer while there were glimpses of what he could offer last season when deployed higher up.

His energy, physical attributes and ability to make dangerous runs into good areas mean he is well suited to an advanced role and United have added more depth in defensive midfield with the arrival of Sofyan Amrabat. So could McSauce become McStriker? Quite possibly. McTominay certainly seems more suited to the role than Eriksen was or is and so could be a genuine alternative.

He could be a focal point given his physical capabilities, while his Scotland showings prove his threat if he dropped deep into a false nine role. It's unlikely to be a permanent positional change but United have been short of goals all season and could be short of strikers in Turkey next week.

McTominay could be the wildcard solution that sounds just so crazy it might just work.