Raphael Varane could be back for Manchester United against Aston Villa on Saturday in the last of the Red Devils’ pre-season tour matches in Australia.
Varane was injured in training after the opening match of the tour, against Liverpool in Bangkok.
Another star who has been unavailable due to injury, James Garner, could also be in with a chance as he resumes full training.
Garner was desperate to show new manager Erik ten Hag what he can do on the tour but the ill-timed injury has put paid to that so far.
In another open house training day yesterday, reporters spotted both players training although they were not included in the “first XI” side in a practice match that could hint at Saturday’s starting XI.
Absent from training was Scott McTominay, who was withdrawn at half time on Tuesday as United beat Crystal Palace 3-1.
The Athletic’s Laurie Whitwell reports that McTominay was “doing gym work” at the club’s hotel.
The possible starting XI based on yesterday’s training match would be De Gea, Dalot, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw or Malacia, Fred, Van de Beek, Fernandes, Sancho, Rashford and Martial.
Judging by this warm-up drill of 11 players, looks like outfield selection will come from Dalot, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw, Malacia, Fred, Van de Beek, Fernandes, Sancho, Rashford, Martial.
McTominay doing gym work at hotel.
— Laurie Whitwell (@lauriewhitwell) July 21, 2022
After Saturday, United have only two more warm up games before the season commences, against Atletico Madrid in Oslo and Rayo Vallecano at Old Trafford on the 30th and 31st of July, respectively.
The fact that the games fall on consecutive days means that it is highly unlikely the same teams will start both games.
The European friendlies could offer United fans a first glimpse of new signings Lisandro Martinez and Christian Eriksen. It will be interesting to see, with Martinez in the fold and Varane fit, who Ten Hag is eyeing to be his starting centre back partnership of the new season, which kicks off against Brighton in just over two weeks on 7th August.
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