Your guide to Manchester United's pre-season friendlies

The Red Devils are returning to action and will play 6 pre-season games. Goal takes a look at all the upcoming friendlies...
Manchester United won the Premier League title in what was Sir Alex Ferguson's final hurrah. With David Moyes being appointed as the new manager, he has plenty to live up to.

Back to work from 2nd July

The players returned to training on July 2nd at the Carrington Training Ground (now AON Training Complex) including Wayne Rooney, whom David Moyes described as being in the "best shape in a long time" after his reported interest in a move away from the club.

Manchester United's young full-back Rafael was thrilled to return to the club after his holidays. "I like this stage of the year a lot... I feel good when I'm working," he said.

Pre-Season Friendlies

Singha All Star XI vs Manchester United
Date: 13 July, 2013

Venue: Rajamangala Stadium, Bangkok.

Kick Off: 20:00 local time
13:00 GMT
06:30 pm IST

Result: Singha All Star XI 1-0 Manchester United

Manchester United kicked off their tour in Bangkok with a shock 1-0 loss against Singha All Star XI in the Singha 80th Anniversary Cup. The hosts scored the solitary goal early in the second half. Adnan Janujaz put in an impressive performance while Wilfried Zaha made a decent cameo appearance in his first outing.

About the opposition-

The Singha squad was led by manager Dr. Vichit Yamboonruang, who is the director of the Thai Premier League, and was assisted by head coach and former Thailand international Piyapong Pue-on, who scored 103 goals for the War Elephants.

A-League All Stars vs Manchester United
Date: 20 July, 2013

Venue: ANZ Stadium, Sydney.

Kick Off: 19:30 local time
09:30 GMT
03:00 pm IST

United then travel to Australia to face the A-League All Stars. The squad consists of some familiar names in Alessaandro Del Piero, Emile Heskey, Adama Traore and A-League season 2012-13 season's top scorer Daniel McBreen, who netted 19 times for Central Coast Mariners.

About the opposition-

Ange Postecoglou, who gave Melbourne Victory FC a third place in the A-League, will be managing the A-League All Stars team. The 4 times capped Australian was voted highest amongst the coaches, scalping 36.8% of the total votes.

Alessandro Del Piero, the legendary Italian, will be a man to watch out, as the former Juventus man has a track record of performing well against the Red Devils. He netted 14 goals in 24 apperances for Sydney FC in the A-League, and will try to replicate the same form against United.


Yokohama F. Marinos vs Manchester United
Date:  23 July, 2013

Venue: Nissan Stadium, Yokohama.

Kick Off: 19:20 local time
10:20 GMT
03:50 pm IST

The Marinos are a reputed club in Japan, plying their trade in J-League Division 1. They were the first club to win back-to-back titles in 2003 and 2004.

About the opposition-

The club is managed by Yasuhiro Higuchi, who is a former Japanese International himself. They also have some experienced campaigners in Shunsuke Nakamura and Yuji Nakazawa, both having played for Japan in the World Cup.

Brazilian striker Marquinhos will be the man to watch, who netted 10 goals in just 22 appearances for the Yokohama based club last term.

Cerezo Osaka vs Manchester United
Date:  26 July, 2013

Venue: Osaka Nagai Stadium, Osaka.

Kick Off: 19:00 local time
10:00 GMT 03:30 pm IST

Cerezo Osaka has a connection with Manchester United, as Shinji Kagawa rose from the famed academy of the Osaka City club.

About the opposition-

The club have some promising youngsters in their squad, having previously produced some stars like Hiroshi Kiyotake and Takashi Inui, all plying their trades in top European teams. United must expect a tough battle against them.

Yoichiro Kakitani, Cerezo's star attacking midfielder must be kept an eye on. He scored 14 goals for the Japanese club last season, and is reportedly tracked by several European clubs.

Kitchee SC vs Manchester United
Date:  29 July, 2013

Hong Kong Stadium, Hong Kong.

Kick Off: 20:00 local time
12:00 GMT
05:30 pm IST

Kitchee play in the Hong Kong First Division. Kitchee Foundation received HK$8 million from the Mega Events Fund to host the match against the English opposition.

About the opposition-

Àlex Gómez, who started his coaching lessons at La Masia, the youth academy of FC Barcelona, is the head coach of the Hong Kong Barça.

Jordi Tarrés, the veteran Spanish striker, will be spearheading the Kitchee attack. The number 18, has experience in Spanish football, having previously plied his trade with Sabadell and Hércules.

AIK Fotboll vs Manchester United
Date:  6 August, 2013

Friends Arena, Stockholm.

Kick Off: TBC

AIK Football ply their trade in the Allsvenskan, the Swedish League.

About the opposition-

The Gnaget's are historically the third most successful club in Sweden, having won the title 5 times, and finishing second on 11 occasions. The Red Devils would like to end their pre-season on a high, but face a mighty task in the form of the famed Swedish side.

Robin Quaison, AIK's young midfielder, was a revelation in the Allsvenskan last year. Despite being just 19 years of age, the number 15 of Ghanaian descent has already been capped by Sweden twice, and has also scored for them. Dubbed as “the Scandinavian Xavi”, the teen should be kept quiet throughout the match to gain a favourable result.


Manchester United's Man to Watch
Wilfried Zaha

Wilfried Zaha was recruited from Crystal Palace for a fee believed to be in the region of 15 million. He will be the subject of interest for the United fans during the pre-season, as he tries to stay upto the hype he recieved during his spell with Crystal Palace.

Manchester United's wingers failed to live upto the expectation during the last season, and Zaha's arrival comes at the right time.

The Ivory Coast born youngster won the Championship PFA Player of the Year 2012–13 for a string of brilliant performances, that ultimately led to a move to Old Trafford.

What the Bench-warmers need to do...

Along with several youngsters, the fringe players will also be pushing for a first team spot with some good showings in the pre-season. Anderson, who played very scarcely for the Red Devils last term, will be hoping to stake his claim by impressing new boss Moyes. Fabio, who returned from a loan to QPR, will battle it out with Alexander Buttner for the left-back spot.

Michael Keane, who had a terrific season on loan at Leicester City, is also in contention for a starting spot.

Talented youngsters Adnan Januzaj and Jesse Lingard will also look to make the most of the playing time available to them.

Manchester United's pre-season squad

Goalkeepers: Anders Lindegaard, Ben Amos
Defenders: Rafael, Phil Jones, Rio Ferdinand, Jonny Evans, Patrice Evra, Alex Büttner, Fabio, Michael Keane
Midfielders: Michael Carrick, Anderson, Tom Cleverley, Ryan Giggs, Wilfried Zaha, Jesse Lingard, Adnan Januzaj
Strikers: Wayne Rooney, Danny Welbeck