Manchester United’s pre-season campaign rolls into Norway on Tuesday for a clash against manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s hometown outfit of Kristiansund at Ullevaal Stadium in Oslo.
The Red Devils have enjoyed strong performances this summer, winning all five of their pre-season clashes to date, including a 2-1 victory over Tottenham last time out.
They will face a side midway through their domestic season, lying seventh in the Eliteserien, having snapped a four-game winless run by beating Lillestrom 5-2 immediately before their summer break.
|Game||Kristiansund vs Manchester United|
|Date||Tuesday, July 30|
|Time||6:00pm BST / 1:00pm ET|
TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch
In the US, the match will not be available for broadcast though it will be streamed on MUTV Online.
|US TV channel||Online stream|
In the UK, the match will be shown on MUTV and will be available for streaming at MUTV Online.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|
Squads & Team News
|Goalkeepers||McDermott, Vaikla, Mbaye|
|Defenders||Sorli, D. P. Ulvestad, Hopmark, Psyche, Gjesdal, Aasbak, Sivertsen, Coly, Sormo, Williamsen|
|Midfielders||Cirak, P.E. Ulvestad, Kalludra, Diop, Isaksen, Solskjaer|
|Forwards||Gjertsen, Bye, Olsen, Kastrati, Amang, Hoven, Diatta|
Confirmed Kristiansund starting XI: McDermott, Ulvestad, Psyche, Coly, Aasbak, Diop, Cirak, Kalludra, Bye, Gjertsen, Kastrati.
|Position||Man United squad|
|Goalkeepers||De Gea, Grant, Pereira, Romero|
|Defenders||Dalot, Jones, Lindelof, Rojo, Shaw, Smalling, Tuanzebe, Wan-Bissaka, Young|
|Midfielders||Fred, Angel Gomes, James, Lingard, Mata, Matic, McTominay, Pereira, Pogba|
|Forwards||Greenwood, Chong, Martial, Rashford|
Confirmed Manchester United starting XI: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Jones, Lindelof, Shaw; Matic, McTominay; James, Lingard, Martial; Rashford.
Betting & Match Odds
Manchester United are very strong 1/8 favourites to win this match at Bet365. Kristiansund can be backed at 12/1, while a draw is on offer at 13/2.
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will return to Norway on Tuesday for a special friendly against hometown club Kristiansund at the national stadium.
Questions may continue to circle about Solskjaer’s ability to lift United back among the European elite after a disappointing end to the 2018-19 campaign, but he has overseen a successful summer in charge of the Red Devils, who have won all four of their friendly matches to date.
A young and vibrant squad now takes the relatively short hop to Oslo for what, on paper, is one of their more straightforward matches of their preparation to date.
It will, however, be a special occasion for the manager but particularly his opponents.
“All their players will be looking forward to this as if it’s Christmas Eve,” he told Man Utd’s official website.
The story of Kristiansund is a remarkable one as they have ploughed their way through the Norwegian leagues, having only been founded 15 years ago, first reaching the top flight in 2012.
“Every year for the last 15 years they’ve bettered their results and gone on, they’ve got higher and higher,” Solskjaer said. “They’ve got to get to third or fourth this season to keep that run going so that’s quite an achievement.”
At the halfway point of the Norwegian season, and therefore in the midst of a month-long holiday, Kristiansund will be hard pushed to hit that target. Currently, they lie seventh, five points shy of fourth, albeit with a game in hand.
Their strength is defensive, and indeed there is no side in the whole division that has conceded fewer goals. Scoring, however, has been a greater problem with only 17 registered in 14 matches.
One young man especially keen to find the target will be Noah Solskjaer, Ole’s son, who could make his debut for Kristiansund’s top team in this match.
“Of course, it’s special for him that he’s been training with the first team for the last couple of weeks, he’s just been promoted. He’s had a tough couple of years with operations so he’s getting there,” his dad said of the 19-year-old.
And if he were to score?
“Well done to him but we’ll do as much as we can to stop him,” Solskjaer Snr said.
In front of a near-sell-out crowd, this match represents a huge opportunity for Kristiansund and one they will be eager not to miss.