Manchester United returned from their tour Down Under at the weekend and added a new pre-season friendly in their schedule.
On Wednesday, Erik ten Hag’s men played Wrexham in a behind-closed-doors fixture at Carrington. The Dutch coach included an extra game in his plans to give minutes to new arrivals and players who weren’t regularly involved in Australia.
Let’s talk about the four key things that happened this afternoon, as United registered a comfortable 4-1 win over the National League club:
1. Christian Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez’ debut
Eriksen and Martinez were unveiled officially as new Red Devils this week, and made their debut together. The Argentine centre-back partnered Raphael Varane in defence, while Eriksen took charge of the creative duties from the Number 10 position.
Ten Hag’s determination convinced United to spend over £50m for Martinez. As such, it wasn’t a surprise to see him start on the very same day his signing was announced. In order to be ready for the opening Premier League fixture, the former Ajax man would need to accumulate as many minutes as possible during the remaining friendlies.
With the scoreline at 1-1, Eriksen and Martinez both came off at half-time.
2. Debut Goal for the Dane
Eriksen marked his debut by netting a trademark free-kick from the edge of the box.
The Denmark international’s set-piece ability proved to be a big asset for Brentford last season. During the upcoming season, United could add valuable goals to their tally if Ten Hag can find a way to keep Cristiano Ronaldo away from such situations and instead hand Eriksen the responsibility of finding the net from distance.
Before the break, Wrexham defender Aaron Hayden found the equaliser and dropped Ronaldo’s “Siuuu” celebration.
3. Action for Young Stars
In the second-half, United youngsters took charge of beating the non-league opposition, owned by Hollywood stars Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney.
Alejandro Garnacho didn’t feature at all in Thailand and Australia, but made sure to make his first appearance count by restoring United’s lead. Amad Diallo added another goal to put the game out of the visitor’s reach. United’s fourth and final goal of the day came from Alex Telles.
4. Ronaldo in Attendance
The Portuguese returned to the club’s training ground this week to reiterate his desire to leave the club. He didn’t feature against Wrexham, but watched on his teammates registering a 4-1 win. Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford and Harry Maguire were also in attendance.
It’s unclear if Ronaldo is available for United’s next friendly. The Red Devils will face Atletico Madrid, the latest side to be linked with the 37-year-old.