This season promises to be like no other due to the World Cup being scheduled smack bang in the middle of the domestic campaign.
The tournament dubbed the ‘festival of football’ will take place in Qatar and the showpiece is set to kick off on November 20.
While the likes of Victor Lindelof, Scott McTominay and Anthony Elanga will be absent from the biggest tournament in football, Manchester United could have as many as 21 representatives, as it stands, at the 2022 World Cup.
Manchester United players hoping to go to the World Cup
England – Dean Henderson, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw, Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford
Dean Henderson will be hoping to build on his impressive start to the season and grab the attention of Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate.
With Jordan Pickford, Aaron Ramsdale and Nick Pope all vying for the three goalkeeping spots, the Nottingham Forest loanee is playing catch up having not featured at all in the Premier League last season.
Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire will be expecting to be guarantees given their exploits in the European Championships, but if they find themselves on the side-lines at club level under Erik ten Hag, that could put Southgate in an awkward position.
Marcus Rashford hasn’t played for England since missing a decisive penalty in the European Championship final against Italy.
After returning from shoulder surgery last season, the 24-year-old endured a miserable season, but he looked a man reborn against Liverpool.
Like Rashford, Jadon Sancho also missed a spot-kick against the Azzurri and he hasn’t played for England since scoring two goals against Andorra last October.
The pacey duo face a tall order earning a recall, but hopefully their influential performances against bitter rivals Liverpool prove to be the springboard in their renaissance.
Portugal – Diogo Dalot, Bruno Fernandes and Cristiano Ronaldo
Diogo Dalot will be hoping to participate in his first World Cup while it’ll be Bruno Fernandes’ second time playing in the biggest tournament on the planet.
Cristiano Ronaldo will be competing in a record-equalling fifth World Cup, having been selected for his country for the tournament in Germany in 2006. The former Juventus man has been ever present at football’s biggest tournament ever since.
Having scored in four World Cup tournaments, Ronaldo joins Pele, Uwe Seeder and Miroslav Klose as the only male players to do so.
But in Qatar, United’s number seven will be looking to rewrite history once again by becoming the only male player to have scored at five different World Cups.
Brazil – Alex Telles, Casemiro and Fred
With Renan Lodi and Alex Sandro posing competition at left-back, Alex Telles will be hoping to impress Brazil manager Tite during his season-long loan at Sevilla.
Casemiro and Fred have played alongside one and other 20 times for Selecao and their partnership and understanding is only likely to get stronger playing together at club level.
Argentina – Lisandro Martinez and Alejandro Garnacho
The Butcher will likely participate in his first World Cup and Garnacho would love to form part of Lionel Scaloni’s squad alongside the former Ajax man.
Garnacho was called-up to the senior Argentina side in March and the 18-year-old could be La Albiceleste’s wildcard pick like Theo Walcott was 16 years ago.
Netherlands – Tyrell Malacia and Donny van de Beek
While Jurrien Timber opted against reuniting with Ten Hag following comments from Louis van Gaal about putting his World Cup place at jeopardy if he didn’t play regularly, Malacia wasn’t fazed about encountering such issues with the former United manager.
Van de Beek hasn’t played for the Netherlands for 18 months and he faces a big fight earning a recall under Van Gaal with him on the periphery at Old Trafford.
France – Raphael Varane and Anthony Martial
If Varane is fit, he’ll be a guarantee in Didier Deschamps’ Les Bleus squad and the four-time Champions League winner will likely be a guarantee starter for the defending champions.
Martial is competing against a wealth of attacking French talent, but if he can retain his fitness and establish himself as a regular under Ten Han than the former Monaco man will fancy his chances of earning a recall.
Spain – David de Gea
With Luis Enrique seemingly favouring Unai Simon, Robert Sanchez and David Raya as his three goalkeepers, United’s number one goalkeeper faces a huge battle just getting into Enrique’s squad.
The 31-year-old hasn’t played for his country for two years.
Uruguay – Facundo Pellistri
After suffering an ankle injury in the pre-season friendly against Atletico Madrid, the former Penarol man’s chances of leaving on loan look to have been curtailed.
But despite not making his senior competitive Manchester United debut and struggling for minutes last season while on loan at Alaves, the speedy South American looks to be a vital part of Diego Alonso’s Uruguay side.
Denmark – Christian Eriksen
After suffering a cardiac arrest at last summer’s European Championships, the Danish playmaker has made a remarkable return to action.
The 30-year-old will be competing in his third World Cup.
Tunisia – Hannibal Mejbri
While the former Monaco starlet is the subject of interest from Gerard Pique’s FC Andorra, according to L’Equipe, the Tunisian international is expected to go out on loan to a Championship side.
Playing regular minutes will be crucial for Hannibal ahead of his first World Cup.