Manchester United have confirmed that “a family issue” will prevent Cristiano Ronaldo from forming part of their pre-season plans in Thailand and Australia, with Erik ten Hag naming a 31-man touring squad that does not include the Portuguese superstar.
GOAL learned on Thursday that the five-time Ballon d’Or winner - who continues to push for a summer transfer away from Old Trafford - would not be involved in the first fixtures of the new manager’s regime.
It is understood that United have no intention of sanctioning a switch for their prized asset, despite his desire to go chasing trophies elsewhere, but they will be without the services of an all-time great when stepping up their preparations for the 2022-23 campaign.
Why is Cristiano Ronaldo not involved in Man Utd’s pre-season tour?
The Red Devils have said when announcing their travel plans on the club’s official website: “Cristiano Ronaldo will not be in the party departing for Thailand as he has been granted additional time off to deal with a family issue.
“Defender Phil Jones is following a specialist pre-season programme, as was the case last summer, to ensure he is best prepared for the campaign ahead. Brandon Williams, back from a loan spell at Norwich City, has a small issue and so is continuing to work at Carrington.
“Andreas Pereira is being afforded a break following his recent exertions in Brazil, on loan with Flamengo.”
Who is in Man Utd’s pre-season tour squad?
While some senior professionals are missing from Ten Hag’s ranks, a number of youngsters and recent loanees are being given an opportunity to catch the eye.
Among those included in United’s squad are academy stars Alejandro Garnacho, Zidane Iqbal and Charlie Savage, who all made senior bows last season.
Tahith Chong, James Garner and Ethan Laird are among those to have returned to Old Trafford from elsewhere that are hoping to impress back with their parent club.
Man Utd’s 31-man squad in full:
Goalkeepers: David De Gea, Tom Heaton, Nathan Bishop, Matej Kovar
Defenders: Eric Bailly, Diogo Dalot, Ethan Laird, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Tyrell Malacia, Luke Shaw, Alex Telles, Axel Tuanzebe, Raphael Varane, Aaron Wan-Bissaka
Midfielders: Amad Diallo, Bruno Fernandes, Fred, James Garner, Hannibal Zidane Iqbal, Scott McTominay, Facundo Pellistri, Charlie Savage, Donny van de Beek
Forwards: Tahith Chong, Anthony Elanga, Alejandro Garnacho, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho
Who are Man Utd playing in pre-season?
The Red Devils are set to open their summer schedule with a game against old adversaries Liverpool at the Rajamangala Stadium in Bangkok on July 12.
From there they will head to Australia and take in meetings with Melbourne Victory on July 15, Crystal Palace four days later – with both of those games being held at the MCG – before wrapping up their tour with a game in Perth against Aston Villa on July 23.