Man Utd suffer injury blow in pre-season loss to Real Madrid

Manchester United were beaten 2-0 in Houston thanks to goals from Jude Bellingham and Joselu.

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Manchester United midfielder Kobbie Mainoo suffered what appeared to be a worrying injury in the pre-season loss to Real Madrid on Thursday.

The Red Devils were beaten 2-0 by Los Blancos in Texas, with Jude Bellingham and Joselu netting the goals. But a disappointing result for Erik ten Hag’s side was compounded by the injury suffered to Mainoo, who was involved in a coming together with Real’s Rodrygo after just a few minutes of the game kicking off.

The United midfielder was replaced by Christian Eriksen after just six minutes and appeared to be in real pain as he made his way off the pitch. Mainoo was also pictured wearing a protective boot and using crutches after the match, which could indicate a serious injury, although United are often overly cautious in such scenarios. Amad was seen sporting the same medical equipment after the win over Arsenal at the weekend, but was on the bench against Real.

Meanwhile, asked about Mainoo’s injury after the game, Ten Hag said it was too early to make a judgement on the nature of the problem. "So, hopefully, it's not too bad and then chances will come,” said the Dutchman. 

“I wanted to see what levels he could play. Against Arsenal, we were pleased with his performance. I wanted to see if he could repeat that, some days after, from then, we would have conclusions. First, we have to wait for the diagnosis and, from there on, we will set conclusions."

The decision to start Mainoo is an indication of just how highly Ten Hag rates the 18-year-old. United went with their strongest XI against Real, which included the likes of Andre Onana, Raphael Varane, Lisandro Martinez, Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford. Ten Hag also opted to select Mainoo ahead of experienced midfielders Scott McTominay, Christian Eriksen and Donny van de Beek.

Following the loss in Houston on Thursday, United face Borussia Dortmund on Monday in their final match of the summer US tour. The Red Devils then fly back to Manchester and host Lens at Old Trafford on Saturday 5 August, while the team will also play Athletic Bilbao in Dublin the following day. Ten Hag is expected to split his squad for the two matches, allowing as many players as possible to play a full 90-minute match.

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