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Luke Shaw and Donny van de Beek were missing from Manchester United training

by Derick Kinoti


Manchester United kick off their Europa League campaign tomorrow when they face Spanish opposition, Real Sociedad.

The squad took part in an open training session today ahead of tomorrow’s game in which Erik ten Hag is expected to rest many of his regular starters.

As per The Manchester Evening News, in today’s afternoon training session, the most conspicuous absentees were Donny van de Beek, Anthony Martial and Luke Shaw.

Ten Hag, in his press conference today ahead of tomorrow’s Europa showdown, confirmed that Martial is still sidelined with an injury, but he did not offer an explanation for Shaw and Van de Beek’s absences.

Van de Beek, who is still yet to get a consistent run in the side under Ten Hag, was confirmed to be injured by the club before the Arsenal game. There has been no update since on the Dutch international.

Among those who trained, the surprise inclusion was Kobbie Mainoo, who was involved with the first team alongsideĀ Alejandro Garnacho, Zidane Iqbal and Charlie McNeill.

Mainoo, 17, won the FA Youth Cup last season with United – an achievement that has since earned him a promotion to the Under-21 side.

The highly-rated youngster signed his first professional contract with the Red Devils in May. He has been playing at the club since he was nine.

It remains to be seen whether the manager hands him a senior debut tomorrow, something he is in contention for according to MEN. It will do him a world of good to be around senior professionals.

Beyond Martial, Van de Beek and Shaw, no other senior player was missing, which will leave Ten Hag spoilt for bench options tomorrow.

The Manchester Evening News also reports that David de Gea is set to be rested tomorrow, which means that new signing Martin Dubravka could start in goal against Sociedad.

Tomorrow’s game will provide a good opportunity for Ten Hag to give fringe players and the youth a chance while also giving others a well-deserved rest ahead of Crystal Palace on the weekend. Regardless of who starts, the expectation is that the team should start off their European campaign on the right foot with three points.

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