Race for first midfield signing

Maguire missed Tuesday’s game against Liverpool in Bangkok with a minor niggle but Ten Hag confirmed that he will have his captain back for Friday’s game against local A League outfit Melbourne Victory. “We will see [how long for]. I think he can play half a game,” the United manager said. 

Donny van de Beek is one of several United players facing a potential defining next season. The Netherlands midfielder has lost his place in the Dutch squad after becoming such a peripheral figure at Old Trafford and will hope that Ten Hag, under whom he flourished at Ajax, can help to revive his fortunes. Van de Beek, it must be said, looked rather laboured during a training session before the Liverpool match and ended up being overlooked in Ten Hag’s first starting XI for Scott McTominay, even though the Scotland international had missed the previous day’s training. 

Neither Ole Gunnar Solskjaer nor Ralf Rangnick appeared to trust Van de Beek and he spent the second half of last season on loan at Everton, where injuries did not help matters, but Ten Hag is clear about where he feels the player’s best position is. “Donny’s best position is his capabilities in the box of opponent,” the United manager said. “Playing short behind a striker he has a really good smell for being in the right position.”

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