Man Utd stars train in Spain as they prepare for friendlies during World Cup ahead of second half of season | The Sun
MANCHESTER UNITED have begun their warm-weather training camp in Spain amid the World Cup break with many absences and new faces.
United manager Erik ten Hag picked a squad filled with players that didn't make their national team's cut for Qatar, those whose countries didn't qualify and academy prospects.
In fact, of the 29 players to make the trip, only 11 could be considered regular members of Ten Hag's first team.
The Dutchman took his players to Cadiz for mid-season preparation as they face a packed December schedule once the 2022 World Cup comes to an end.
The Red Devils are also set for some friendlies as they will take on Cadiz and Real Betis this coming week.
The vast majority of senior players have taken off for Qatar and only Denmark's Christian Eriksen, Tunisia's Hannibal Mejbri as well as Uruguay's Facundo Pellistri have suffered an early exit.
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Remaining regulars like David de Gea, Donny van de Beek, Victor Lindelof and Scott McTominay led the pack during drills.
Ten Hag kept a close eye on the youngsters as he will need to rotate this month once club football restarts with United also set for Carabao Cup action against Burnley.
The likes of Brandon Williams, Alejandro Garnacho, Shola Shoretire, Charlie McNeil, Zidane Iqbal, Charlie Savage, Teden Mengi and Di'Shon Bernard all made the flight.
Ten Hag's eye was fixed on the youngsters, especially during passing drills.
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In fact, the 52-year-old tactician focused on passing and move play as he wants his team to play slick attacking football.
Ten Hag needed the academy players to get up to speed, as they will need to apply it immediately after a potential call-up, and the youngsters didn't disappoint as they showed some fine passing.
It wasn't just the young that stood out however, as Van de Beek, who has struggled since his move to Old Trafford in 2020, also had some moments of brilliance.
The playmaker flicked the ball to a team-mate behind his standing leg twice within quick succession and brought back memories of his stunning Ajax performances.
Ten Hag wasn't taking it easy as he regularly yelled his instructions to his players demanding perfection.
United appear to be entering a new era, especially after Cristiano Ronaldo's dramatic exit from Old Trafford.
The Red Devils ripped Ronaldo's contract apart after his bombshell interview in which he slammed the club from top to bottom.
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