Jose Mourinho was not surprised his Manchester United side struggled for rhythm during the 0-0 draw with San Jose Earthquakes at Levi’s Stadium.
The boss feels his team will look more like the one that is likely to start the Premier League season when a number of his World Cup stars return to the fray. Nemanja Matic is already in the States, although Jose says he won’t feature against AC Milan, with David De Gea and Fred due to link up with their colleagues next week.
With the International Champions Cup tournament starting on Thursday (04:05 BST) in the Reds’ next outing, the competitive element could aid United after consecutive draws in the friendlies with Club America and San Jose.
'He has the personality to want the ball'Video
”One more training session,” Jose told MUTV.
“We are not a team. We’re a group of players from different teams. Some are first-team, some Under-23s, some coming from loans and going on loan, some are younger, Under-18s. We don’t have a team to play much better than we did but [it’s] one more training session.”
Alexis Sanchez and Andreas Pereira were among the best performers for the Reds and both were discussed by the manager.
“Good for Alexis,” he said.
“The first time he plays after some individual sessions. He needed this and he made a good effort, a good physical effort, which is important for him in this moment. Andreas is playing okay. In the first match, he was okay and today too. I think he has to play even more simply than what he’s doing but he has the personality to want the ball and to organise. I’m happy.”
The manager admits it is an unusual situation at the moment as he waits for his first-teamers to return but he feels handing the young players a chance is a positive. James Garner and Tahith Chong both started the goalless draw.”It's difficult to have 10 players not here,” he admitted.
“Still, we try to be motivated, you try to motivate the people around you, but it's not easy. It is strange [not to have the other players] so the motivation is to try to train the best we can, to try to give the players minutes, to try to give the young players an opportunity to develop and that's it.”
Serbia international Matic is in Los Angeles but will not be rushed back against AC Milan. Meanwhile, skipper Antonio Valencia limped off early in the proceedings and, despite appearing to suggest he will be okay, the manager has concerns.
“Matic trained today for the first time,” added the manager.
“[He did] individual training, he's not going to play in the third game after today's though. Antonio is injured.