A friendly against Atletico Madrid is one of football’s great contradictions, and it was no surprise to see Manchester United embroiled in a rather harrowing pre-season battle with Diego Simeone’s side as they were beaten by a late goal from Joao Felix at the Ullevaal Stadion.
The Brazilian was one of 10 substitutions made by Atletico boss Diego Simeone in the second half and he struck in the 87th minute to settle the harrowing affair. The ball was played past Joao Felix on the left and he cut inside Diogo Dalot before using the Portuguese as a shield to deceive David de Gea with a low shot inside his right post.
The afternoon turned even worse for United and their new manager Erik ten Hag when Fred was sent off in the 90th minute as he received a second yellow card for planting his foot in the body of Alvaro Morata who was on the ground.
Fred received a second yellow card and was sent off in stoppage time against Atletico Madrid
The pre-season loss saw Christian Eriksen’s first appearance in a Man Utd shirt
It was referee Espen Eskas’ seventh yellow card, including two following a 20-man scrum just before half-time.
So a first loss in five pre-season outings for Ten Hag. If he was looking to strengthen his squad ahead of the new season, then this was the perfect test. United have been forced to fight every step of the way, and maybe that’s not such a bad thing for a group of players who weren’t united last season.
If Ten Hag was hoping for more goals after netting 13 times during the club’s pre-season tour of Thailand and Australia, he must have been disappointed.
United failed to score for the first time under the Dutchman against the side that knocked them out of the Champions League in March.
It was a promising start for Christian Eriksen, the Denmark international who came off the bench in the second half to a warm welcome from his Nordic neighbors here and immediately started creating chances.
Manchester United’s squad line-up for their pre-season clash with Atletico Madrid in Oslo
Summer signing Lisandro Martinez was on the bench as Manchester United lost to Atletico
Ten Hag has brought what is believed to be his first team to Oslo ahead of next weekend’s Premier League opener at home to Brighton, with the remaining players – including Cristiano Ronaldo – due to face Rayo Vallecano at Old Trafford on Sunday .
However, Jadon Sancho fell ill at United’s hotel overnight, so Anthony Elanga started on the right side of the attack. With Luke Shaw not away, new £14.6million defender Tyrell Malacia started at left-back and United’s other two summer signings, Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez, were on the bench.
Malacia was involved in setting up United’s first game chance in the second minute as the England side got off to a flying start in sunny Oslo. He did well to get out of trouble near his own penalty area and play the ball to Bruno Fernandes who released Marcus Rashford with a long ball down the left. Rashford clipped Stefan Savic before forcing a smart save from Jan Oblak at his near post.
Moments later, Anthony Martial latched on to a loose ball and scored the goal but lifted his effort just over the bar under pressure from two defenders.
Christen Eriksen signed for Manchester United on a free transfer and played in the second half
Erik ten Hag instructs his players from the touchline as United take on Atletico in Oslo
Martial looked sharp here again after scoring three goals on tour and is set to lead United’s attack against Brighton no matter how Ronaldo plays Vallecano, with the Portuguese star believed to be three weeks away from a complete physical form.
Atletico came back into the game, however, and saw the goal clear twice as the first half wore on. First, Angel Correra flared up after Yannick Carrasco’s free kick was returned to him. Then Victor Lindelof rushed to clear his lines from Marcos Llorente’s shot and had to recover quickly to snatch the ball from Geoffrey Kondogbia’s toes in front of goal.
It wouldn’t be Atletico Madrid without a bit of trouble, however, and the rest of the first half turned into a litany of small fouls and bookings.
Anthony Martial closes in on United in Red Devils’ pre-season loss to Atletico Madrid
Fred joined Thomas Lemar in the referee’s notebook for hacking Correa and Reinildo followed to floor Elanga after the youngster stole the ball from him near goal.
Elanga needed treatment minutes earlier when he took a groin boot during a challenge with Llorente. United medical staff then had to treat Harry Maguire for a cut lip as he complained to the referee.
Tempers flared in the 39th minute when Scott McTominay burst into Oblak as he came out to claim a high ball, and all 20 outfielders were involved in a scrum in the Atletico box which went ended with the booking of McTominay and the Slovenian goalkeeper.
Maguire then received the game’s fifth yellow card early in the second half and Martial was receiving treatment when Simeone made 10 substitutions just before the hour mark.
The Red Devils suffered their first pre-season defeat when they lost 1-0 against the Spanish side
Ten Hag was more reserved with his changes, waiting until the 69th minute to give Eriksen his debut in place of Martial and sending Donny van de Beek for McTominay.
Atletico should have taken second place earlier but Saul Niguez guided an early shot over the bar from close range when Joao Felix’s cross found him in front of goal.
Eriksen’s first real contribution was to throw a fine diagonal pass on goal, but neither Rashford nor Elanga could quite finish it. Shortly after, his corner picked out Maguire unmarked in front of goal, but the United skipper inexplicably headed wide.
It proved costly as Joao Felix got up to snatch the winner. Fred seeing red was a fitting end to a rather moody friendly.
#Manchester #United #lose #Joao #Felix #goal #preseason #loss #Atletico