Sancho absent, wantaway forward present: What we learned from Day one of Man United pre-season

Andre Onana and Willy Kambwala of Manchester United in action during a first team training session
-Credit: (Image: Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images)


The first batch of Manchester United players have returned for pre-season training as preparations for the 2024/25 Premier League season get underway.

Having signed a one-year extension to his contract, Erik ten Hag led the first day as eyes turned to the first game of the season against Fulham at Craven Cottage. United also have the small matter of a replay of the FA Cup final match as they take on Man City in the Community Shield a week earlier.

Ten Hag will be assisted by Ruud van Nistelrooy and Rene Hake, who are being added to the coaching staff at Old Trafford. Both were spotted arriving at training on Monday morning.

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Mason Greenwood was also in attendance at the training ground. But he was there for talks over his future and didn’t take part in training with the rest of the squad. Meanwhile, Jadon Sancho was not accounted for at today's session.

Some more pictures have been released throughout the day. Here are some things spotted as pre-season got underway.

Returning loan players

Hannibal Mejbri was among the players to return for day one on Monday morning, following the conclusion of his loan spell with Sevilla. The 21-year-old struggled for game time with the Spanish club, making just six appearances in his six-month spell.

The midfielder is one of the players who could leave Old Trafford this summer. But first, he will look to impress Erik ten Hag in pre-season to try and work his way up the pecking order.

Fighting for their futures

Among those returning for the first day were a few players who may be fighting for their Manchester United futures during pre-season. Casemiro, Mason Mount, Aaron Wan Bissaka, and Harry Maguire were among those pictured arriving at Carrington at the start of the day, with all four players linked with an exit this summer.

Youngsters involved

As well as some of the senior players, a few youngsters from the U21 squad are likely to be given a chance to impress in training in the coming days and weeks. Two young players, Will Fish and Dermot Mee, have been pictured doing work in the gym on the first day of pre-season.

Fish plates at centre-back and spent last season on loan with Scottish Premiership side Hibernian. Mee is a goalkeeper and was a regular for both the U18 and Premier League 2 sides last season.