Richie McCormack
Richie McCormack

20.20 29 Jul 2021


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Manchester United have cancelled their friendly with Preston North End due to an outbreak of COVID-19 at the Premier League club. 

United were due to make the short trip to Deepdale on Saturday.

"Following routine testing of the first-team training group today [Thursday], we have identified a small number of suspected positive cases," a United statement read.

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"This has led to those people isolating, pending further tests."

It's a blow to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's preparations for the new Premier League season, with the Preston game scheduled to have been their penultimate friendly of pre-season.

A home game with Everton has been lined up for August 7th, before United begin their season at home to Leeds United.

Solksjaer is yet to welcome back the full compliment of his squad, with some having been involved in the latter stages of Euro 2020 and the Copa America.

The club went on to say, "At this stage, we do not expect further disruption around our forthcoming matches, but we will continue to follow Premier League protocols in this regard."

They drew 2-2 with Brentford on Wednesday evening, in front of a 30,000 crowd at Old Trafford - their biggest attendance since March of 2020.

Solskjaer admitted after that Brentford game that the staggered return of his squad was far from ideal.

"Yes, the boys who have been here are working hard," he said, "And we can see the benefit they're getting but there are still players away so you don't really know how they are, how much they've worked.

"Every year when there's an [international] championship it's a difficult summer but we'll work with the players when they come back."

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