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Preview: Manchester United to raise their game against Barcelona?

Barcelona -v- Manchester United

FedEx Field, Landover, Maryland, United States of America

Wednesday 26th July 2017; KO 19:30 local time – Thursday 27th July 2017; KO 00:30 in the United Kingdom

Live on MUTV in the United Kingdom

Manchester United play their last match in the International Champions Cup and the last of the United States of America leg of their pre-season tour on Wednesday evening in Landover, Maryland, the early hours of Thursday morning in the United Kingdom. United have played four matches, winning four matches, one of those after a penalty shootout. United have beaten LA Galaxy, Real Salt Lake, Manchester City and Real Madrid. Next up is another La Liga side, Barcelona. This will be Barcelona’s second pre-season match of the summer beating Juventus 2-1 last week. Barcelona will play two more matches; the El Classico against Real Madrid in Miami and a friendly against Chapecoense, raising money after the tragic plane crash which lost the majority of the clubs players and officials in November 2016.

United have scored ten goals on their pre-season tour so far, winning three matches in 90 minutes, one after a penalty shootout in which United scored twice from the spot. Marcus Rashford has three goals to his name this summer, both Romelu Lukaku and Henrikh Mkhitaryan have two, with Jesse Lingard, Marouane Fellaini, and Anthony Martial all having one goal a piece. United manager Jose Mourinho has used the majority of his 28-man squad this summer with three players who are yet to recover from injuries sustained last season; Luka Shaw, Ashley Young, and Marcos Rojo – who should be back in action in exactly that order. Speaking to the official Manchester United website, Mourinho gave an update on the trio’s recovery, saying:

“It’s good to have them here, it’s been good for them to be with us and recover with the group. They have no chance for the beginning of the Premier League season. Luke Shaw is the first one to recover, Marcos Rojo will be last and Ashley Young will be in between. Luke is September, Young is October and Rojo is December, or maybe January. The group is really strong and it’s good to be together. It’s important for them to be with us and not be in Manchester working at home.”

United have two more pre-season matches of the summer remaining after this match with United travelling to Oslo, Norway to face Valerenga on Sunday, then to Dublin, Ireland to face Sampdoria on Wednesday 2nd August which ends their friendly run of the summer. United will face one match before their

Have Manchester United have beaten Barcelona on pre-season before.

Manchester United and Barcelona have met many times in the history of both clubs. In the last decade, the two clubs have been involved in two UEFA Champions League finals a year apart with the Catalan club marching to victory on both occasions. United did face Barcelona in their pre-season tour of the United States of America back in 2014, beating the Catalan club at the Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California. It was nothing to brag about though as with it being a FIFA World Cup year, the club were missing Lionel Messi and many of the stars of the team back then. This time though, Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar, unless is protracted transfer to Paris Saint-Germain actually happens, will all play meaning it will be game on for United.

Team News: Juan Mata and Ander Herrera are both able to train, however, both will miss the Barcelona match.

Jose Mourinho should have 23 players fit for this match with Luka Shaw, Ashley Young, and Marcos Rojo already on the sidelines through injury at the start of the tour and Juan Mata, who limped off in the 2-1 victory over Real Salt Lake, the second pre-season match of the summer and Ander Herrera limping off in the penalty victory over Real Madrid on Sunday. Neither of the Spanish players are injured for the long-term but both will miss the Barcelona match and possibly return to action on Saturday before travelling to Norway to face Valerenga on Sunday. Jose Mourinho confirmed this by saying:

“They cannot play tomorrow [against Barcelona] but I think they will recover in time to be integrated with the team when we go back to work next Saturday. They will probably play on Sunday [against Valerenga].”

Predicted Starting XI: Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku to start for Manchester United against Barcelona?

Match Prediction:

Barcelona 2-2 Manchester United

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