On Wednesday night, Manchester United dispatched Burnley to book their place in the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup.
The Red Devils didn’t bask in the glory of their impressive 2-0 display for too long. They returned to training at Carrington on Thursday to prepare for Nottingham Forest on Tuesday (via The Manchester Evening News).
Against Burnley, Danish playmaker Christian Eriksen put United ahead in the first half by tapping in an acrobatic cross from Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
After the interval, Marcus Rashford burst down the pitch in a positive and direct run from inside his own half. Rashford ended his courageous solo run with a superb finish that put the game beyond Burnley’s reach.
The festive season will be a feast of football fixtures for fans but demanding on players. Erik ten Hag’s preparations for the remainder of United’s season campaign are underway.
MEN Sport observed this during the latest practice at the Carrington session:
Kobbie Mainoo remains in Ten Hag’s plans
While Mainoo didn’t make the squad that faced Burnley, he is still essential to Ten Hag’s plans. His performance, which included a goal against Cadiz in a mini-tour during Qatar 2022, was proof of his immense talent. Ten Hag put the starlet through his paces on Thursday ahead of United’s next game.
Rhys Bennet gets a step closer to a start
Bennett made the cut for the United squad against Burnley, unlike fellow youngster Mainoo. The rising star was an obvious choice for a United side that was left threadbare in the centre-back position. The Red Devils forfeited Harry Maguire to an illness which meant Casemiro had to shore up the defence.
Ten Hag eagerly awaits the return of regular starters Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez. However, until the pair of World Cup finalists get back, Bennett could be the solution bolstering the United backline. The youngster has delivered above and beyond in the U21s.
Alejandro Garnacho grappling with the Mancunian winter
The young Argentine needs no introduction, putting in a series of stellar performances for the Red Devils before Qatar 2022. His direct style of play and consistency has been rewarded with the youngster starting against Burnley.
Garnacho cuts a confident figure, effortlessly integrating into the senior team. However, the winger still seems to be grappling with Manchester’s winter.
Facundo Pellistri continues to chase an elusive start
Pellistri was an integral part of Uruguay’s World Cup team, leaving many baffled how he is still to feature for United’s senior side. Facing a Championship side in the Carabao Cup would have been an ideal time to give the Uruguayan a run, yet he never came off the bench.
The lack of playing time could spell the end of Pellistri’s time at Old Trafford.
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