Manchester United wrapped up their US tour with a 2-1 win over Real Madrid. Alexis Sanchez and Ander Herrera were on target in the first half while Karim Benzema pulled one back for Real in the 45th minute. United then managed to hold Real Madrid for the entirety of the second half and thus ended their pre-season tour on a victorious note.
With no Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema were adding star value for the largely Madrid-supporting crowd in Miami. The two linked up early with Bale starting a move at the end of which Benzema shoot wide from close range. United started taking control 18 minutes into the game and it was Sanchez who gave them the lead. Herrera set Darmian free on the right and the latter’s cross was steered in by the Chilean. Nine minutes later, Juan Mata put a cross in that was diverted into the path Herrera by Sanchez. The Spaniard’s finish was precise and United were ahead. Real’s attacks were sporadic and yet they did manage to find the target before half time.
Mourinho was as morose as ever and said that he “didn’t learn anything” from the pre-season tour. “I know what Herrera, Mata and Sànchez are, I know the kids are very young and need time to grow up. The boys gave everything and we tried to fight for the best result, but tactically it means nothing.”
Roma beat Barcelona 4-2
Malcolm, who snubbed Roma for Barcelona just a few weeks back, impressed in the first half but the Spanish champions conceded three goals in the second half to lose 4-2. Rafinha scored for Barca early and Stephan El-Shaarawy equalised for Roma. Malcolm went on to score just before the half-time whistle to make it 2-1. Alessandro Florenzi, Bryan Cristante and Diego Perotti scored in the second half to give Roma a 4-2 win.
It was a superb move yet the one which followed nine minutes later, was arguably better. Darmian lifted the ball to Mata and once the Spaniard had regained his composure he crossed for Sànchez who was able to divert the ball into the path of Herrera. His finish was precise and clinical. Bale curled wide soon after yet Madrid’s attacks were so sporadic, it was a surprise to see them pull one back just moments before the end of the first half, Benzema steering in an excellent Theo Hernández cross.
Bale, a one time target for Mourinho, was withdrawn for the second half as Julen Lopetegui shuffled his pack and one of the substitutes introduced, Martin Ødegaard, should have levelled on 56 minutes when he blazed over the bar from eight yards. The young Norwegian also saw a free-kick saved by De Gea on 73 minutes but Mourinho’s side held firm. Now, however, the hard work really begins.