EPL

Man Utd v Liverpool, El Clasico, Ten Hag's Old Trafford introduction – key pre-season dates for your calendar

By Sports Desk July 09, 2022

It may feel like men's football has hardly been away, but Europe's top leagues are already into pre-season, meaning it promises to be a busy few weeks as teams ramp up preparations for the 2022-23 campaign.

Of course, pre-season is a little more compact this year because of the first ever mid-season World Cup, which is due to begin in November.

The World Cup's place in the calendar means the domestic season is starting earlier and finishing later than usual.

You can expect plenty of noteworthy games before the end of July. They may not mean a great deal in the grand scheme, but these games can offer a degree of intrigue, whether bitter rivals are facing each other or new signings are beginning their integration.

Below, Stats Perform has identified some notable matches that may be worth keeping tabs on before the end of the month.

Manchester United v Liverpool - July 12, 14:00 BST

Erik ten Hag's first match in charge of United will be against fierce rivals Liverpool in Bangkok on Tuesday. The Dutchman may not have made all the signings he would surely have liked before jetting out for pre-season, but seeing his new squad in action on the pitch for the first time may give him a better idea of what the club's transfer priorities should be.

RB Leipzig v Liverpool - July 21, 18:15 BST

The first of successive friendlies against 'Red Bull' clubs (they play Salzburg six days after this), and some Liverpool players will find themselves in familiar surroundings when they go to Leipzig. This should provide a good test of the Reds' fitness ahead of facing Manchester City in the Community Shield nine days later.

Bayern Munich v Manchester City - July 23, 00:00 BST

Pep Guardiola faces his former team in what will be the first ever soccer game played at the famous Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Arsenal v Chelsea - July 23, 01:00 BST

London rivals Arsenal and Chelsea are the main attractions in the Florida Cup, which confusingly is not just being played in the Sunshine State. However, the Gunners and Blues will be playing their contest in Orlando.

Tottenham v Roma - July 23, 19:15 BST

Spurs versus Jose Mourinho. Say no more.

Barcelona v Real Madrid - July 24, 04:00 BST

This Las Vegas clash will be by no means the first time Barca and Madrid have played a Clasico during pre-season. Their clashes are always worth watching, regardless of the stakes.

Bon diaaaaaaa!  pic.twitter.com/JdnE523QIs

— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) July 9, 2022

Barcelona v Juventus - July 27, 01:00 BST

After tussling with Madrid in a Clasico, Barca face another European heavyweight in Juventus at the Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas, Texas.

Arsenal v Sevilla - July 30, 12:30 BST

The Emirates Cup is usually a solid option for pre-season entertainment. Arsenal's visitors this year are Julen Lopetegui's Sevilla, who finished fourth in LaLiga last season.

Real Madrid v Juventus - July 31, 03:00 BST

Having signed Angel Di Maria and seemingly being about to announce Paul Pogba's arrival, Juventus will be under pressure to pose more of a threat in Serie A and Europe next season. In that case, who better to test themselves against than Champions League winners Madrid? This game will be played at the Rose Bowl in Los Angeles.

Manchester United v Rayo Vallecano - July 31, 16:00 BST

This one may buck the trend in that it is not necessarily a clash between two current European high performers, but it is noteworthy as being Ten Hag's first Old Trafford game.

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