Manchester United Forward Ready For Selection Against Rayo Vallecano Despite Playing In Atleti
Despite playing for 75 minutes of the available 90 in Manchester United’s 1-0 loss to Atletico Madrid on Saturday, Anthony Elanga made it clear that he would like to play again tomorrow.
Handed just his second start of United’s pre-season games, Elanga confirmed that he would like to play against Rayo Vallecano tomorrow at Old Trafford.
Speaking to MUTV, Elanga stated that he was more than willing to play again in the club’s final pre-season game:
“I’m up for whatever to be fair, if I’m playing tomorrow I’ll be playing. If the fans are coming, it looks like it’ll be a really good game.”
If Elanga is to play, he will have got on the pitch in six of United’s seven pre-season games, only missing the club’s behind closed doors game against Wrexham. Elanga’s 75 minutes against Atletico are the most he has received so far this summer.
Following his breakout season last year, the Sweden international has now racked up 29 first-team appearances.
Handed his debut by then interim manager Ralf Rangnick, Elanga like the rest of the squad has found himself needing to adjust under new manager Erik ten Hag. Discussing the tactics deployed by the Dutchman, the 20-year-old stated he’s enjoying his time under Ten Hag’s stewardship.
“It’s been really good [his time at United since Ten Hag took over]. New tactics, new system. [I’m] Really excited about working with him this season, and getting better and improving in all areas of my game.”
With United spending much of their pre-season in Australia, the team’s game against Atletico marked their only match in Norway this summer.
Elanga, a native of a Scandinavian country himself commented on the huge fan base United have in the area, with the forward admitting how great it felt to be on the receiving end of such heavy support:
“It is amazing, I feel like in Scandinavian countries, they’re quite big on Premier League football and obviously United have a big fan base. So coming here and seeing the amount of fans United have it’s quite special.”
Elanga, who started 14 Premier League games for United last season, was not necessarily guaranteed his starting role against Atletico. However, following Jadon Sancho being forced out of the squad due to him feeling unwell, Elanga was handed his place in the starting 11.
If Elanga does take part in United’s game against Rayo Vallecano on Sunday, he will be aided in the frontline by returning forward Cristiano Ronaldo.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner confirmed via his social media pages on Friday that he will be playing against Vallecano on Sunday.
Ronaldo was one of several key players who did not make the trip to Oslo, with Raphael Varane, Luke Shaw, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, and Eric Bailly all not travelling.