Manchester United will start their pre-season campaign with a friendly against Premier League rivals Liverpool at the Rajamangala Stadium in Thailand today.
The Red Devils have been training hard over the past three days in Bangkok, and now have the chance to put on a good showing at a sold-out stadium.
New United manager Erik ten Hag may not be with the services of Harry Maguire and Raphael Varane with minor injuries, but the rest of the squad are fit.
With pre-season, it is obvious that there will be wholesale changes at the interval or at the hour mark, but Ten Hag may start with his strongest XI available.
David de Gea should start in goal for the pre-season opener after a fantastic 2021/22 campaign where he made several outstanding saves. The Spaniard could be replaced by deputy Tom Heaton in the second half.
Diogo Dalot and Luke Shaw are likely to be the first-choice full-backs for the forthcoming campaign, and we fancy Ten Hag to start with the duo ahead of Aaron Wan-Bissaka and summer signing Tyrell Malacia.
With Maguire and Varane sidelined, Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly should line up at the heart of the defence. Axel Tuanzebe remains the only other option available with Phil Jones not part of the 31-man squad.
Ten Hag is likely to play with a single holding midfielder. Judging by yesterday’s training session, Fred seems the probable candidate to start ahead of Scott McTominay. The Brazilian had a fine second half to last season under Ralf Rangnick.
In front of him, we fancy Donny van de Beek and Bruno Fernandes to feature. Van de Beek spent time away on loan with Everton earlier this year. He had a mixed experience due to an injury. The Dutchman now has the chance to revive his United career under his former Ajax boss.
Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Jadon Sancho are widely expected to form the front three. Sancho played on the right wing in training and provided a delightful assist for Rashford, who started on the left flank. It should be identical this afternoon. Martial will be leading the line with Cristiano Ronaldo not in the squad due to personal reasons.
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