As many as 15 Manchester United saw international action this in a variety of Euro 2024 qualifiers, World Cup qualifiers, Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers and other friendlies.
On the whole, most players had a positive experience. Marcus Rashford had a good game as England beat Scotland in a 150th anniversary match of the first ever international fixture in 1872, while Casemiro played in two Brazil wins and Victor Lindelof had a mixed set of results for Sweden.
Two others – Lisandro Martinez and Sofyan Amrabat – were called up by their respective countries but played no part on the pitch because of minor injury concerns.
Ten goals over the course of two Portugal wins left the 2016 European champions on the brink of qualfying for the 2024 tournament next summer. Bruno Fernandes had a direct hand in half of them.
The United skipper scored the only goal of a 1-0 victory over Slovakia, made his his own smart dribble into the box, before a hat-trick of assists in the 9-0 thrashing of Luxembourg and another of his own in the closing stages for good measure.
United will need that kind of talisman performance when the Premier League resumes.
Jadon Sancho wasn’t involved in international football this month, already out of favour with England. But his club career has taken a sour turn in recent weeks and showed little sign of being resolved, despite remaining behind at Carrington to thrash it out.
Barely two years after his £73m arrival from Borussia Dortmund, a transfer that was a couple of years in the making, Sancho has fallen out with Erik ten Hag and is training individually. 90min also understands that United haven’t been impressed with his reaction to what has gone on.
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Rasmus Hojlund made his delayed United debut in the Arsenal defeat just prior to the international break. Two Denmark matches, both wins, provided an important chance to get more minutes under his belt in his quest for full match fitness.
The 20-year-old was a substitute for both games against San Marino and Finland, but he came off the bench for a good amount of time on the pitch in each and also hit the post against the former. He remains the joint second top scorer in Euro 2024 alongside Scott McTominay (both six goals).
It hasn’t been a good year for Harry Maguire and that didn’t much change during a break from the Manchester United pressure cooker.
The centre-back was outshone by partner Marc Guehi in a pretty drab England performance against Ukraine. He then began on the bench against Scotland and scored an own goal upon coming on.
Neither performance will have done enough to suggest he should be regularly starting for United when everyone is fit, while his England place will only come under further pressure if that continues.
The problems surrounding Jadon Sancho and Antony, as well as the unfortunate pre-season injury to Amad Diallo, have created a notable void on United’s right flank. But Facundo Pellistri could now be ready for a consistent run of games in the hope of making the position his.
The 21-year-old has played more senior internationals for Uruguay than first-team games for United over the last three seasons, but he has impressed in flashes and was a starter for his country in their World Cup qualifying win over Chile. Pellistri also got more minutes as a sub against Ecuador.
LISTEN NOW TO 90MIN’s MAN UTD PODCAST: THE PROMISED LAND
On this edition of The Promised Land, part of the 90min podcast network, Scott Saunders andRob Blanchette discuss Man Utd’s options on the right wing and whether Facundo Pellistri is good enough to replace Antony!
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