Manchester United play a third pre-season friendly tonight, taking on Brentford.

This is a step up after games against Derby County, a 2-1 win, and QPR, a 4-2 defeat.

Brentford are now a Premier League side after winning promotion and they will be keen to give a good account of themselves.

This is United’s first friendly match back at Old Trafford. Another will be held against Everton next week, with an away game against Preston in between this weekend.

Manchester United Pre-Season Training Session
(Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)

So who could play for United against Brentford?

The available squad is largely similar to the QPR game, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer confirmed.

Solskjaer said Donny van de Beek and Diogo Dalot will play, as substitutes. They will likely get around 30 minutes each.

Scott McTominay could also play his first game of pre-season. Tahith Chong and Nathan Bishop have now left the squad for their loan spells.

Bruno Fernandes will not play as he only returned to training yesterday. Dean Henderson is not passed fit yet either. Both could feature against Preston on Saturday.

United are still very short of key players due to Euro 2020. Next week’s game against Everton will see the team start to take shape.


Here is a look at how United could line up against Brentford.

Breaking down the team selection

Defensively United’s options are too limited. Dalot will come on and play part of the game.

Beyond that, the likes of Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, Luke Shaw, Dean Henderson, David de Gea, are all unavailable, with Alex Telles also now injured. Raphael Varane obviously is not fully signed or eligible just yet. So what is there, will have to do for this fixture.

United should use this chance to start James Garner against a Premier League side, to see how he fares. Playing him with experienced pair Jesse Lingard and Nemanja Matic should help him out.

Scott McTominay, Donny van de Beek, and possibly either Juan Mata or Hannibal could come on during the second half. Dylan Levitt or Shola Shoretire will also fancy some minutes – but it is starting to get congested in midfield now, and that’s without Fred, Paul Pogba, and Bruno Fernandes.

Up front Mason Greenwood will lead the line, and he needs a strong performance, with Edinson Cavani due back soon. There is no sign of Anthony Martial so far.

Facundo Pellistri has a goal and assist to his name in pre-season and he will likely start on the right, with Greenwood in the centre and Jadon Sancho and Amad still absent for different reasons.

On the left Anthony Elanga should get the chance to start after a promising display against QPR in the last match. Dan James will also get 45 minutes, so it is possible James starts and Elanga plays the second half again – but we would like to see the young Swede given preference.

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