Donny van de Beek and Paul Pogba

United trio poised for valuable minutes

Wednesday 24 March 2021 11:18

Three fit-again Manchester United stars can get valuable minutes under their belt on Wednesday evening.

Although the Reds aren’t in action ourselves this week, plenty of our players will be playing a lot of football over the coming days.

In total, 14 members of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s current first-team squad have been selected for their respective national teams for the international break, with fixtures starting on Wednesday.

Among them are Donny van de Beek, Paul Pogba and Anthony Martial, who all recently returned from injury.

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Donny was back in the United starting line-up in our defeat to Leicester City on Sunday and was instrumental in Mason Greenwood’s equaliser before half-time. The midfielder elegantly let the ball go through his legs leaving it for Mason to fire home. 

The game at King Power Stadium was Donny’s first action since our 1-0 win over West Ham United in the fifth round of the FA Cup in February. When the Netherlands take on Turkey for a World Cup qualifier for Qatar 2022, that could prove a great opportunity for our no.34 to gain some important match fitness ahead of the run-in. The game kicks off at 17:00 GMT. 

If he’s not involved on Wednesday, another opportunity soon comes along as the Oranje take on Latvia on Saturday (17:00 GMT kick-off) before playing Gibraltar (19:45 BST kick-off) on the following Tuesday.

Pogba and Martial are both in the France squad which faces Ukraine on Wednesday before encounters against Kazakhstan and Bosnia-Hercegovina make up the schedule for the World Cup holders.

Our midfield maestro announced his return to the United side by becoming the matchwinner against AC Milan last Thursday, only three minutes after coming on at the San Siro. Our former Academy talent also provided the assist for the aforementioned Greenwood goal against the Foxes. It has been a stellar comeback and France coach Didier Deschamps will hope Pogba can keep up the momentum when Les Bleus start their qualifying campaign.

Martial was back from injury against Brendan Rodgers's men last weekend, playing the full 90 minutes after recovering from an injury sustained against West Ham in our last Premier League fixture. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer stressed the importance of having our no. 9 back after the quarter-final clash with Leicester and the Norwegian will hope Anto returns with more minutes under his belt, raring to go for the final weeks of the campaign. 

Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba are both in the France squad for this international break.

In addition to the aforementioned trio, Daniel James, who has enjoyed a run of games in recent weeks, will be in action for Wales this week, as they take on Belgium on Wednesday in a qualifier (19:45 GMT kick-off) before meeting Mexico in a friendly (20:00 GMT kick-off). The Dragons end their international period by playing Czech Republic the following Tuesday (19:45 BST).

Our Portuguese magnifico Bruno Fernandes makes up the list of Reds in international action on Wednesday. The European Championship holders start their World Cup qualifiers by playing Azerbaijan (19:45 GMT kick-off), before taking on Serbia on Saturday (19:45 GMT kick-off) and Luxembourg next Wednesday (19:45 BST kick-off).