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Manchester United: Brentford draw at Old Trafford, as Leicester, Tottenham & Leeds also in action


Andreas Pereira
Andreas Pereira is expected to leave Manchester United either on loan or permanently this summer

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he “couldn’t have asked for more backing” from the club after being given the funds to spend more than £100m on Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho.

Solskjaer said United are working to get Varane into the country as quickly as possible after agreeing a deal in principle with Real Madrid for the central defender.

The Government’s decision to relax quarantine regulations for entry into England from Monday should help speed up the process of getting the France international through his medical.

Coming so soon after Sancho’s £74m arrival from Borussia Dortmund was confirmed, it is turning into a good summer for United.

Speaking after an entertaining 2-2 pre-season draw with newly-promoted Brentford at Old Trafford, Solskjaer said: “You can’t ask for more backing than to get these two in as early as we can. It shows the club’s ambition. One of most exciting talents in the world and one of best centre-backs in the world.

“We have scrambled to get players in before. This year we are in a good position.

“Raphael [Varane] is a player we have followed for many years. Sir Alex Ferguson came very close to signing him. He has won everything there is to win.

“These two players swill make a huge difference to us, this season and after that.”

Teenage forward Anthony Elanga produced another eye-catching performance, scoring the opener against Brentford, his second goal in successive pre-season matches.

Solskjaer says he will think about whether to let the Swede leave on loan, although first he will assess the fitness of the remainder of his Euro 2020 players, including his England contingent, who are due to return to the club on Monday.

Andreas Pereira was also on target with a brilliant 25-yard volley, while Bryan Mbeumo and Shandon Baptiste twice pulled the Premier League new boys level.

The United manager said a decision over whether striker Marcus Rashford is to have surgery, which the player feels he needs but could rule him out for three months, will be made in the next few days.

Solskjaer also revealed a familiar face will be returning to the training ground at the weekend as Phil Jones, who has not played since January 2020, begins his comeback.

Leicester lose & Spurs win

Tottenham enjoyed their latest pre-season action with a comfortable 3-1 win at League One MK Dons.

Dele Alli, Son Heung-min and Lucas Moura were all on target for the second successive match – after netting in Spurs’ 3-0 win at Colchester last time out.

Spurs remain unbeaten under new boss Nuno Espirito Santo having drawn their summer opener against Leyton Orient.

It wasn’t so encouraging for Leicester though who, despite fielding a strong side including Jamie Vardy and new signings Patson Daka and Boubakary Soumare, lost 1-0 at League on Wycombe.

The Foxes drew their pre-season opener against Burton 0-0 as they await their first goal of the summer.

Elsewhere a late strike from Pascal Struijk earned Leeds a 1-1 draw at Blackburn Rovers, having won their first game against Guiseley last time out.

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