Manchester United – Inter Milan
Washington DC, USA
KO: 00:30 BST
Manchester United are set to compete in the third leg of their US Tour when they come up against ex-captain Nemanja Vidic in Washington DC on Tuesday night.
Louis Van Gaal’s side have won two out of two since the Dutch coach took charge earlier this month. After instilling his philosophy into the players immediately since joining up with the players, United’s new 343 formation has proved a stroke of genius, with Manchester United scoring 10 and conceding just two (a penalty and a wonder strike from the opposition half).
Van Gaal has managed to get his three best attackers into one formation all in their natural positions.
“One argument for why I chose this system is that I can play them all [Mata, Rooney, van Persie]. But we don’t forget the others. We can’t forget that Hernandez can play in the striker position, Welbeck can play in the striker position and maybe Will Keane can play in the strikers position. Then Rooney too, he can play in 9, 10 and he told me he can play 7 or 11 too. But I like him more as a 9 or 10″ Van Gaal said.Ahead of the game against Inter, Van Gaal has revealed that Wilfried Zaha will play a part in the game – in the striker role during the second half.
Van Gaal said, “When we play this system, he [Zaha] must play as a striker, otherwise he cannot play. Young is another winger, but he can also play as a wing back. We shall see.”
Speaking of the striking position, Van Gaal believes Javier Hernandez offers great competition in that role.
“He came later than the others because the Dutch national team beat Mexico in the Last 16! That’s why he has to train. I believe he is fit. When he plays, he will play in the strikers position and there is great competition there with Rooney, Welbeck, van Persie, Keane, Zaha – a lot of players.”
Van Gaal confirmed the side will play 343 throughout the tour as the players “have been playing 442 & 433 since they were young, so they know that”. The boss confirmed Chris Smalling will play the full 90 minutes against Inter and hinted the England international will be given the captain’s armband.
“It’s the ones who play 90 minutes. Tomorrow Smalling plays 90 minutes, so maybe he’ll be captain [smiles]“.
With Rafael back at home after suffering a groin injury, Van Gaal’s options at RWB are limited. Valencia has started both games there so far, while Ashley Young had a run out against Roma and did well.
Smalling(c) – Keane – Jones
Valencia ———————- James
Fletcher — Kagawa
Hernandez – Rooney
With Wilfried Zaha assured a place up front in the second half, Van Gaal is expected to switch the team around again completely at half time. Will Keane, Jesse Lingard, Luke Shaw, Ander Herrera and Tyler Blackett will all play a part and will once again look to impress.
Inter Milan have looked rather shaky throughout their tour so far, which included a 2-1 defeat to Real Madrid in which Nemanja Vidic scored his first goal for the club. United will be looking to improve on their performance against Roma on Saturday, where Van Gaal wasn’t happy about United’s quality on the ball, despite their victory.
With a few experiments in the side, Van Gaal will be happy with a victory and a good performance.
Manchester United 3-0 Inter Milan