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Valerenga-v-Manchester-United-Pre-Season-Friendly.jpg

Valerenga 0-3 Manchester United: Fellaini, Lukaku and McTominay net in Oslo stroll

Date Posted,July 29, 2017

Manchester United notched up a routine victory in their latest pre-season friendly as they saw off Valerenga 3-0 in Oslo.

After toiling for much of the first-half, the visitors took the lead just before break when Marouane Fellaini put recent transfer speculation behind him and headed the ball home.

New signing Romelu Lukaku was introduced as a half-time substitute and wasted no time in getting in on the action, forcing home a powerful header just two minutes after the interval.

A third was added with 20 minutes remaining when Scott McTominay scored his first senior goal for the club

Here’s what we learned from Oslo…

1. Fellaini going out with a bang?

Fellaini scored on the stroke of half-time (Image: Getty Images Europe)

It was a bit of a surprise when Jose Mourinho named the big Belgian midfielder in his starting XI for the friendly, given that he appears set to sign for Galatasaray.

And it was even more of a surprise when he then found the back of the net for the Red Devils, breaking the deadlock in a dominant United performance.

This week Galatasaray sporting director Cenk Ergun revealed that negotiations have opened to bring the Belgian to Istanbul, meaning Sunday’s match could be his last for the Old Trafford club.

If Fellaini is to put pen to paper with Turkish giants then he has certainly signed off his Man United career with a bang. And if doesn’t, well he’s given Mourinho something to think about as the Portuguese closes in on Chelsea’s Nemanja Matic.

2. Lukaku shows his worth

Lukaku made an instant impact from the bench (Image: Manchester United)

While watching the Red Devils fail to break down the hosts during the opening 44 minutes, it was clear to see why Jose Mourinho spent big on Romelu Lukaku.

This was a game that was taylor-made for the Belgian powerhouse, as they would be squandering some decent build-up play as attacking moves stalled in the final third.

This was a familiar sight for United last season and it was therefore no surprise when Lukaku barged the ball into the back of the net just two minutes after coming on.

3. Pogba set for a big season

Pogba was given freedom to roam (Image: Manchester United)

Paul Pogba is set for a breakout season with Jose Mourinho ready to take the handbrake off and allow the French midfielder to roam and it showed once again here.

Fancy footwork at times, but the way he glides across the pitch and freezes before changing direction is a joy to behold, will tend to run games in this role moving forward.

A wonderful check back on to his left with a Cruyff turn before a cultured, curling shot was a lick of paint away from nestling into the top left corner, denying him a goal—the only thing missing from a superb performance.

4. McTominay adds to his growing reputation

McTominay impressed again (Image: Reuters)

The revelation of 2017 under Jose Mourinho, Scott McTominay’s stardom continues its steep rise with a first ever senior goal for the Red Devils.

Thought to have grown a foot over a year before emerging as a first team option last year, the 20-year-old’s giant frame helped him muscle forward with a series of powerful runs into the box.

Too strong for Valerenga inside the area after Anthony Martial’s well-timed ball, McTominay’s composure to finish will only further his case to be a permanent fixture in Mourinho’s squad this season.

5. Mkhitaryan definitely a Mourinho player – he’s as tough as they come

Mkhitaryan was handed a start in Oslo (Image: Getty Images Europe)

There was genuine fear among the Manchester United fans as Mkhitaryan dropped to the ground holding his knee and punching the ground, clearly in some pain.

Jose Mourinho looked on, slouched in his dug-out, preparing to bemoan his luck at another star man being ruled out of contention ahead of the new season.

But seconds later he was back on his feet, running around, and demonstrating to United fans, and crucially Mourinho, he is made of tougher stuff.

We’re sure Mourinho, who has previously criticised the nature of certain players for failing to play through injuries – Smalling and Shaw were on the receiving end last season – will be very, very proud.

He’s a Mourinho player all right.

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