Manchester United end US tour with disappointing defeat

By Sports Desk July 30, 2023

Manchester United’s US tour ended with a disappointing 3-2 friendly defeat against Borussia Dortmund in Las Vegas.

Having beaten Arsenal before their youngsters lost to Wrexham and first team fell to Real Madrid, the Red Devils stumbled to another defeat as their Stateside trip came to a close.

Diogo Dalot’s superb curling effort gave United a deserved lead at the stunning Allegiant Stadium, only for Donyell Malen to grab a brace during two minutes of madness just before half-time.

Antony drew United level before Harry Maguire – booed at the start by some and admonished by Andre Onana for a second-half error – saw a header come back off his own bar.

The helter-skelter theme continued throughout as both sides made sweeping alterations, Youssoufa Moukoko eventually giving Dortmund the win after cutting out an Aaron Wan-Bissaka pass.

Erik ten Hag made 11 changes from Wednesday’s loss to Madrid with Scott McTominay handed the armband ahead of recently deposed skipper Maguire.

There were some jeers for the 30-year-old when his name was read out, just as there was when he put an early diagonal ball out of play.

Omari Forson, the least experienced starter in Nevada, forced Gregor Kobel into a low save after reading a lax Dortmund pass.

United were in control for the most part and went ahead in stunning fashion midway through the first half, with Dalot’s brilliant 22-yard curler finding the top right corner.

Eyebrows were raised in the 37th minute when Forson was hooked by ten Hag. The 19-year-old had been booked for a heated exchange with Karim Adeyemi just before and the United boss spent 30 seconds explaining his decision on the touchline.

Things were looking comfortable for United, only for Dortmund to turn the match on its head just before the break.

Brandon Williams slipped as Adeyemi raced down the right with United failing to clear as the ball popped up for Malen to slam home from six yards.

Dortmund had their second just 18 seconds after play restarted.

Their high press ended with Tom Heaton playing out to Victor Lindelof, whose ball was cut out by Marcel Sabitzer and the former United loanee quickly fed Malen to score again.

Williams had heated words with a team-mate after playing the Dortmund forward onside and half-time introduction Andre Onana was the next to bellow at a colleague.

The new signing raced over to admonish Maguire after his mistake had led to a Sebastian Haller shot on goal and Adeyemi striking just wide.

United survived that moment and drew level in the 52nd minute. Mats Hummels’ poor clearance was cut out by Donny van de Beek and Antony met the ball with a low shot home.

Maguire inadvertently directed a header off his own crossbar when trying to clear a corner and Dortmund went back ahead in the 71st minute when they picked off a pass by Wan-Bissaka and broke, with Marco Reus’ ball to the far post turned in by Moukoko.

Antony somehow shot across the face of goal after Marcus Rashford was denied with Joe Hugill also seeing an attempt saved.

Related items

  • Milan and Italy legend Gattuso appointed Hadjuk Split coach in surprise move Milan and Italy legend Gattuso appointed Hadjuk Split coach in surprise move

    Former Milan and Italy great Gennaro Gattuso has completed a surprise move to Hadjuk Split, taking over as head coach in Croatia.

    Gattuso, a World Cup winner with Italy in 2006, has signed a two-year deal with the Croatian giants.

    The 46-year-old will be officially welcomed at Poljud next week after Split announced his appointment on Wednesday.

    Gattuso's coaching career began as player-coach of his final club, Sion of the Swiss Super League, and he also had short spells in charge of Palermo and OFI Crete.

    The former midfielder then led Pisa to Serie B promotion before taking charge of old club Milan and subsequently joining Napoli, where he won the Coppa Italia in 2020.

    Short tenures followed with Fiorentina, Valencia and Marseille before his sacking from the Ligue 1 side in February.

  • Southgate succession plan in place after Euro 2024 despite no approaches for England boss Southgate succession plan in place after Euro 2024 despite no approaches for England boss

    England have started to plan for life after Gareth Southgate but Football Association executive Mark Bullingham insists no approach has been made for the manager, nor has his future been decided.

    The Three Lions boss raised questions over his future after German media outlet BILD published an interview this week from Southgate, who suggested Euro 2024 this month is his last chance with England.

    Manchester United were reportedly interested in the 53-year-old as well before reaffirming their commitment to under-fire manager Erik ten Hag.

    As the European Championship awaits in Germany, Bullingham sought to ease any fears over the future of Southgate, though reiterated the FA has already thought through a succession plan.

    "Gareth has been really, really clear that he wants to talk about that after the tournament," Bullingham said.

    "And I don't want to provide any distraction for him and the team, and I want to respect the fact that he wants to talk about the future after the tournament.

     "I've seen some things about, 'Have we got a plan, haven't we?' Any organisation has a succession plan in place for their top employees, and we are no different to that.

    "A succession plan normally includes everything from what you do for the short-term cover, through to a process you follow, through to [drawing up] a candidate pool. We have that for all our top employees."

    Bullingham also assured that Southgate's future will not be dictated by success at Euro 2024, with the manager's contract set to expire in December.

    "[The team] could go further but be playing poorly or have a really unlucky result where you get a couple of red cards and hit the woodwork three times," the FA chief added.

    "I think setting an arbitrary figure isn't the right way to go. I think we step back and look at everything after the tournament."

    In a staunch defence of Southgate, Bullingham lauded the job the former England international has done, guiding the Three Lions to the Euro 2020 final and World Cup semi-finals in 2018.

    "I would say I think the world of Gareth, I think he has done a phenomenal job," Bullingham said.

    "I think he has transformed the fortunes of our team, and that's not just off the pitch, and you can see the culture, but also the performances on the pitch.

    "Since 1966, he has won about half of our knockout games, which is a measure we really use, so we value him massively."

    Should Southgate leave, Bullingham remains open to bringing in another homegrown talent to manage England.

    "We have two senior coaches," he continued. "One of them is English, one of them [England women's boss Sarina Wiegman] is not.

    "Any federation in the world would always want to have a pool of top homegrown talent playing and managing at any time."

  • Milan target Zirkzee called up for Netherlands squad at Euro 2024 Milan target Zirkzee called up for Netherlands squad at Euro 2024

    Joshua Zirkzee is reportedly drawing interest from Milan, Juventus and Manchester United, and will have the chance to further his stock after a late call-up for the Netherlands at Euro 2024.

    Oranje boss Ronald Koeman has lost Frenkie de Jong and Teun Koopmeiners, as well as midfielder Marten de Roon, in the build-up to the tournament in Germany.

    Koeman criticised former club Barcelona for their handling of the injured De Jong before Koopmeiners' absence was also confirmed this week in another blow for the Netherlands.

    Ajax forward Brian Brobbey is another said to be struggling for fitness, forcing the Dutch to act swiftly with reinforcements.

    Zirkzee's inclusion was confirmed on Wednesday as the Netherlands added the striker to their international camp ahead of their tournament opener against Poland on Sunday.

    The 23-year-old does not have a single senior cap under his belt for the Netherlands, but did score seven goals in 19 caps for the Under-21 side.

    Zirkzee found the net 12 times in 37 appearances for Bologna in the 2023-24 campaign as the Serie A side qualified for next season's Champions League.

    That form has reportedly drawn interest from Erik ten Hag's Man Utd, Juventus – who appointed Thiago Motta as their new head coach on Wednesday – and Milan.

    Ian Maatsen, who reached the Champions League final with Borussia Dortmund this year, is the other man brought in for the Netherlands to fill the void left by De Jong and Koopmeiners.

    The Netherlands also face Austria and France in Group D at Euro 2024, where Germany open the tournament against Scotland on Friday.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.