Manchester United

Jadon Sancho & Raphael Varane unlikely to start Premier League opener

Matt O'Connor-Simpson
Jadon Sancho needs time to build up his fitness and integrate with his Man Utd teammates
Jadon Sancho needs time to build up his fitness and integrate with his Man Utd teammates / Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images
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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has said that new signings Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho will not start his side’s Premier League opener against Leeds United next Saturday. 

The arrival of both players is a significant boost for United’s hopes this season. The club have been chasing Sancho for two years and he finally secured a £73m switch from Borussia Dortmund last month. Varane’s arrival was somewhat more surprising with the defender moving from Real Madrid for £41m. 

Both featured at Euro 2020 and, as a result, they have been late getting back to training. Speaking to media before his side’s pre-season friendly against Everton on Saturday Solskjaer confirmed that this would affect their availability for the Leeds game.

"They (Sancho and Varane) still haven’t trained with us and I need to see how they are," Solskjaer said, quoted by the Manchester Evening News. "I can’t see them being available for Everton but hopefully they will be ready to be on the bench [against Leeds]."

Varane and Sancho are not the only United stars who featured for their international sides this summer, and Solskjaer hinted that more players might not make it back in time for the start of the Premier League season.

"We’ve not got everyone back yet and we’re still lacking a few. Every year that there’s a championship it’s difficult. Luke [Shaw], Harry [Maguire], Fred - a few - will only have the Everton game to prepare," he added.

"It’s still not perfect because I think teams with fewer players in tournaments do have an advantage early on but we’re as ready as we can be.Fred played nine games over the summer and he’s had three weeks away from us and then two weeks to get ready again, so they should be ready."

One player who will definitely miss the Leeds match is Marcus Rashford. He will be absent for the first few weeks of the season after deciding to have surgery to fix a persistent shoulder problem.


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