Why it's a massive week for United

Monday 09 August 2021 11:00

A fantastic Euro 2020 and an Olympics you couldn't take your eyes off have gone, and now, it's time for Premier League football.

It's the first week of a new top-flight season for a Manchester United side buoyed by the signing of Jadon Sancho, the prospective arrival of Raphael Varane and the return of our supporters to Old Trafford.

This week has been eagerly anticipated for some time now, and many fans will feel the days drag as they wait to finally watch the Reds begin the season at home to Leeds United, but there's plenty to look forward to before then as well. Here's what's coming up this week...

Monday 9 August

Following our 4-0 win against Everton in the final pre-season friendly, all sights will be firmly set on Saturday's clash against Leeds. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his coaching staff will spend the week preparing their players for what will be an intense opening game. Sancho is set to join the squad at Carrington and train with his new team-mates for the first time.

Tuesday 10 August

We'll wish a happy birthday to legendary captain Roy Keane, who celebrates his 50th. It remains to be seen whether he'll mark his big day by taking his dogs for a walk, or watering his plants!

Elsewhere in British football, Rangers take on Swedish side Malmo in UEFA Champions League qualifying. That's of note to United because these qualifiers decide which teams will go into Pot 4 of the Champions League group stage draw. The Reds will be drawn out of Pot 2 and we'll find out our opponents on 26 August.

Wednesday 11 August

Sancho and Varane could be days away from their United debut at this point, and if they need advice from anyone, they can ask captain Harry Maguire who made his first start for the club on this day two years ago in a 4-0 thrashing of Chelsea. Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Dan James also made debuts in that game, the latter scoring his first goal for the Reds.

Thursday 12 August

There are a couple of notable anniversaries on this day. It'll be 20 years since Ruud van Nistelrooy made a goalscoring United debut against Liverpool in the 2001 Community Shield, and on this day in 2003, Cristiano Ronaldo agreed to join the Reds from Sporting Lisbon.

UEFA Europa League qualifying continues with United left-back Reece Devine, on loan at Scottish Premiership team St. Johnstone, set to play against Galatasaray. The tie is currently level at 1-1, Devine having played in the first leg in Turkey. Good luck, Reece!

Friday 13 August

The Premier League gets under way for the 2021/22 season when Arsenal take on Brentford at 20:00 BST with the game being shown live on Sky Sports in the UK.

Earlier in the day, Solskjaer will hold his pre-match press conference where he'll field questions on the Leeds United game. Full coverage of that can be found on ManUtd.com, MUTV and our Official App.

Jadon Sancho could make his United debut on Sunday.

Saturday 14 August

It's matchday, and for three United teams! Leeds at home to open the season for the men's first team; it needs little further introduction, but we can hope the date is a good omen because on 14 August 1999, the Reds beat the Whites 2-0 at Old Trafford with a Dwight Yorke brace.

United Women take on Aston Villa in a second pre-season friendly at 16:30 BST.

Our Under-18s will also be in action, travelling across Manchester to take on City at the Academy Stadium, with kick-off at midday.

The other Premier League fixtures on Saturday are as follows:

Burnley v. Brighton & Hove Albion
Chelsea v. Crystal Palace
Everton v. Southampton
Leicester City v. Wolves
Watford v. Aston Villa
Norwich v. Liverpool

All of those games, except the Norwich fixture which begins at 17:30 BST, will kick off at 15:00 BST.

Elsewhere in the English football pyramid, United loanees Di'Shon Bernard may turn out for Hull City against QPR in the Championship, while Tahith Chong's Birmingham face Stoke City.

A rivalry resumes on Saturday...

Sunday 15 August

The first Premier League weekend will wrap up with Newcastle United hosting West Ham at 14:00 BST and Tottenham Hotspur welcoming Manchester City later in the afternoon.

Hopefully we'll be spending our Sunday looking back at a win against Leeds.