Perth Glory v United: The essential info
Manchester United’s preparations for the 2019/20 campaign begin on Saturday, when we have our opening game of Tour 2019 in Australia.
A-League side Perth Glory will provide the first opposition of the new season for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Reds, in the friendly game in Perth.
The match is also be an opportunity for supporters to get to see our new recruits Daniel James and Aaron Wan-Bissaka play for United, after joining from Swansea City and Crystal Palace respectively during the current transfer window.
Here’s all the key information you need to know ahead of the game in Perth…
WHAT’S HAPPENED SO FAR IN TOUR 2019?
The Reds jetted off to Australia on Sunday and have already been put through their paces by Ole and his coaching staff in several training sessions. The boss has also been busy away from the training pitch as, on Wednesday, he faced the media in his first press conference of the new season, during which he gave an update on the fitness of attacker Alexis Sanchez. However, for now, Ole’s attention is well and truly on Saturday’s game against Perth Glory.
Tickets can be purchased by visiting ticketmaster.com.
WILL IT BE SHOWN ON MUTV?
The friendly match will kick off at 12:00 BST (19:00 local time) on Saturday 13 July and, like each and every one of United’s pre-season games, it will be shown live on MUTV.
HAVE WE PLAYED IN AUSTRALIA BEFORE?
Yes, but this will be only our fifth visit to the country. The first was back in 1967 when Matt Busby's team toured Australia, while the most recent trip was to Sydney in 2013. The last time the Reds visited Perth was in 1975, but a team of United legends faced a host of Perth Glory greats in a charity match at Perth's nib Stadium in March 2017.
WHO ARE PERTH GLORY?
Founded in 1995, the club are based in Western Australia and have competed in the A-League – the country’s premier competition – since its inaugural season in 2005/06. Perth's kit is mainly white, with purple stripes on the front of the jersey, purple and white shoulders with orange trimming, purple shorts with white trimming and purple socks. They are also commonly known as The Glory.
WHERE ARE WE PLAYING?
The game will take place at the modern and spectacular setting of the Optus Stadium in Perth, which only opened officially in January 2018. The ground has a capacity of around 60,000, making it the third-largest stadium in Australia after the Melbourne Cricket Ground and Stadium Australia. It’s primarily used for Australian rules football and cricket and isn’t the home of Perth Glory, who play at the 20,500-capacity nib Stadium.
HOW DID PERTH GLORY GET ON LAST SEASON?
They enjoyed a superb campaign in 2018/19 and finished top of the A-League for the first time after picking up 60 points from 27 games. The club also finished as runners-up in the A-League grand final - a competition contested at the end of the season between the top six sides in the division - after they were beaten on penalties by Sydney FC. At the end of the season, they released Fabio Ferreira and Walter Scott, while Jacob Italiano joined German outfit Borussia Monchengladbach and Brendon Santalab announced his retirement.
WHO IS THEIR MANAGER?
Tony Popovic enjoyed a varied playing career, which began at Sydney United in 1989 and took him to Japan, Qatar and England, where he turned out for Crystal Palace. The former centre-back also went on to represent Australia at the 2006 World Cup before hanging up his boots in 2008 after a spell at Sydney FC. He moved into coaching, initially as an assistant coach with Sydney and then as a first-team coach at Crystal Palace. Popovic took up his first managerial post in 2012, as the inaugural boss of A-League club Western Sydney Wanderers.
Popovic won the A-League Coach of the Year and PFA A-League Manager of the Season awards in his debut term, and went on to guide the team to two major honours as well as runners-up in three A-League finals. After a brief spell in charge of Turkish club Karabukspor, the 45-year-old was appointed in May 2018 to replace Kenny Lowe, who was dismissed at the end of the 2017/18 season. His first game in charge was a pre-season friendly against Chelsea, which Perth Glory lost 1-0, and in his debut campaign at the helm, Popovic led Perth to the A-League Premiership title.
HAVE WE MET THEM BEFORE?
The answer is no – the Reds will be taking on Perth Glory for the first time, so it promises to be an historic and memorable occasion in Australia.
ANYTHING ELSE I SHOULD KNOW?
Fans of English football may also recognise former Republic of Ireland striker Andy Keogh, who was with Wolves, in Perth Glory’s ranks, along with two veterans of the Football League – Shane Lowry and Neil Kilkenny. As already mentioned, new signings James and Wan-Bissaka could make their first appearances for United, while the younger players among the group could also be given a run-out by Ole as well.
WHO ELSE ARE WE PLAYING IN PRE-SEASON?
After playing Perth Glory, the Reds will stay in Australia for a game against one of our traditional rivals in Leeds United on 17 July. Three days later, United’s International Champions Cup (ICC) campaign will get under way against Inter Milan in Singapore and continue against Tottenham Hotspur in Shanghai on 25 July. After a friendly against Kristiansund in Norway, the Reds will play our final ICC match against AC Milan in Cardiff on 3 August.
All six of Manchester United’s pre-season games will be available to watch live on MUTV, including the clashes with Tottenham Hotspur, Inter Milan and AC Milan.
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