Early team news for United v Real Madrid on Tour 2018
Manchester United conclude Tour 2018, presented by Aon, with what promises to be a thrilling game against Spanish giants Real Madrid.
The Reds round off the stay in the United States with a final match in the International Champions Cup (ICC), against the European champions in Miami at 01:05 BST on Wednesday (20:05 EDT local time on Tuesday).
Jose Mourinho has a number of selection issues to contend with ahead of facing his former club at the Hard Rock Stadium.
Gearing up for Real Madrid Gallery
Swipe through training images from Miami as the Reds get ready for our final match of Tour 2018, presented by Aon.
Jose will definitely be without the services of first-team regulars Antonio Valencia, Anthony Martial and Nemanja Matic.
Regular captain Valencia left the squad after sustaining what is believed to be a calf injury in the goalless draw against San Jose Earthquakes, while Martial flew to Paris to be with his partner, who gave birth to their second child last week.
Matic has also flown home to undergo surgery on an injury he sustained at the World Cup with Serbia, with the influential midfielder set to miss the start of the season – which begins for United against Leicester City in the Premier League next Friday, 10 August.
It means Andreas Pereira, who scored a sensational free-kick against Liverpool, could get another chance in the engine room – perhaps alongside Ander Herrera, who captained the Reds against the Merseysiders last weekend.
Fred is also in contention to make his first start for United, after the Brazilian made his unofficial debut as a 71st-minute substitute in Ann Arbor last time out.
David De Gea also linked up with the squad last week following his World Cup exploits and looks set for his first outing of pre-season, against a team who preside in the city he was born in – Madrid.
With the exception of late arrivals De Gea and Matic, the introduction of Ro-Shaun Williams and Joshua Bohui as late substitutes against Liverpool means that every player who is part of the squad in the US has received some game-time during the tour so far.
Elsewhere, Matteo Darmian, who has featured in all four of the Reds’ pre-season fixtures thus far, could start again at right-back in the continued absence of Valencia and new signing Diogo Dalot.
It remains to be seen whether Chris Smalling or Luke Shaw will be involved amid injury concerns. Centre-back Smalling was replaced by Eric Bailly in the starting line-up against Liverpool after picking up a problem in the warm-up, while left-back Shaw also sat out the game.
At the opposite end of the pitch, Alexis Sanchez is expected to lead the line again – with Martial, Marcus Rashford and Romelu Lukaku still unavailable. The Chilean, who has impressed since joining the squad late, will look to add to his goal against AC Milan in our ICC opener.
HOW ARE REAL MADRID SHAPING UP?
New manager Julen Lopetegui, who was sacked as Spain’s coach two days before the World Cup, has named a large squad mixed with youth and experience for their International Champions Cup campaign, which starts against United.
Among those who could feature for the Spanish side are goalkeeper Keylor Navas, captain Sergio Ramos, midfielders Isco and Toni Kroos, plus forwards Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale.
Madrid are adjusting to life without Cristiano Ronaldo, who sensationally left the Bernabeu behind to join Italian giants Juventus last month.
After facing the Reds, Lopetegui’s side take on Ronaldo’s new club in Landover on Saturday and Roma in East Rutherford next Tuesday as preparations continue for their first competitive fixture of 2018/19, in the UEFA Super Cup against city rivals Atletico Madrid in Estonia on 15 August.
HOW CAN I WATCH THE MATCH?
The match will kick off at 01:05 BST on Wednesday (20:05 EDT local time on Tuesday) and, like all of United's pre-season games, it will be live on MUTV.
In the UK and Ireland, MUTV is available via Sky, Virgin Media and MUTV.com. Outside the UK and Ireland, it can be viewed on MUTV.com, through the MUTV app on iOS, Android, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and Xbox, and on Roku.