Manchester United have now announced their destinations for their pre-season tour 2012. We will see the Red Devils travel to Durban and Cape Town in South Africa, Shanghai in China and Oslo in Norway. Last year Manchester United toured North America, as they did on 2010 also. The Red Devils have not been to South Africa since the 2008 pre-season, which has excited the clubs fans in the country, Norway however, has not been visited by the club since 2002, so the Norwegian fans will be excited to see their team play in their home country. Manchester United last visited China in 2009 pre-season.
South Africa – MTN Football Invitational
18th July 2012 – AmaZulu FC v Manchester United – Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban
21st July 2012 – Ajax Cape Town v Manchester United – Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town
China – Chevrolet China Cup
25th July 2012 – Shanghai Shenhua v Manchester United, Shanghai Stadium, Shanghai
Norway – DHL Tour 2012
5th August 2012 – Valerenga v Manchester United – Ullevaal Stadium, Oslo
This summer, because of UEFA Euro 2012, UEFA U19 European Championships and the London Olympics, there will be many Manchester United players that will be rested from some or all of the pre-season tour. Wayne Rooney, Ashley Young, Danny Welbeck, Phil Jones, Patrice Evra, Anders Lindegaard and Luis Nani are all part of their countries squads in Poland and the Ukraine, David De Gea and Ryan Giggs look certain to represent Spain and Team GB in the Olympics and Michael Keane, Sam Johnstone and Tom Thorpe will represent England in the UEFA U19 European Championships. This will leave Manchester United with quite a good squad for the tour, but not the first choice team we are used to seeing, not for all of the pre-season matches anyway.
We will most likely see new signing Nick Powell, as part of the tour, alongside Shinji Kagawa should he pass a medical and be issued with a work permit prior to the squad being announced in early July.
It will certainly be welcome as life without Manchester United playing is pretty dull, and this summer we are spoilt with football during the summer break. Next summer will be completely different!!
By Paul Bienkowski