Manchester United have taken two players on pre-season tour which could be like new contracts

Although the results have not been quite right in pre-season, Manchester United have reason to be positive after their first three friendlies this summer.

The Reds have won each of their opening three warm-up games without conceding a single goal, defeating Leeds United (2-0), Lyon (1-0) and Arsenal (2-0). Some of the football has been conspicuous and free-flowing at times.

After playing no part in the wins over Leeds and Lyon, United welcomed their international contingent back into the frame for the win over Arsenal in New Jersey on Saturday. It marked a stepping stone crossing in their pre-season campaign.

The triumph over the Gunners saw Luke Shaw, Bruno Fernandes and Alejandro Garnacho return to the starting XI, while the likes of Diogo Dalot, Christian Eriksen, Marcus Rashford and Casemiro had to settle for starting on the bench. United were 2-0 up when the aforementioned quartet came on and they were unable to add to the first-half goals which had been plundered by Jadon Sancho and Fernandes.

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Although the finishes from Fernandes and Sancho were instinctive and emphatic, much of the credit went to youngster Kobbie Mainoo, who played a prominent role in both goals. First, he played a pass inside to Fernandes, who raced forward and then unleashed a shot that was too hot for Aaron Ramsdale to handle, before sending a hopeful punt into the box which was missed by Gabriel, found Sancho and sent him clear to score.

Mainoo, following the return of Eriksen and Casemiro, could have been removed from Erik ten Hag’s starting XI at the MetLife Stadium, but the Dutchman decided to hand him a third consecutive start. Although the highlights of his 45-minute run-out were the roles he played in each goal, his overall performance, not for the first time in the last fortnight, oozed class.

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