Match preview: Victory v Manchester United

Match details

Melbourne Victory v Manchester United
Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)
Friday, July 15, 2022
Kick-off: 8:05pm AEST
Broadcast: Channel 10


Melbourne Victory welcome Manchester United to the MCG this week for a Friday night blockbuster.

A huge crowd is expected for what is a rare opportunity to see an Australian team come up against one of the biggest clubs in world football.

Victory fans will get their first look at how the squad is shaping up ahead of Tony Popovic’s second season in charge.

Victory have made several exciting additions to the squad in recent weeks, many of whom could see their first match minutes for the club on Friday.

Notably, the potential for Victory’s most recent superstar signing Luis Nani to make his debut for the club against one of his former teams has not been ruled out by Popovic, albeit far from guaranteed considering the Portuguese forward’s recent arrival in Australia.

For United, the game will be the first of three matches in Australia, and the only one against Australian opposition.

United have already commenced their overseas pre-season tour by beating Liverpool 4-0 in Thailand on Tuesday night.

The win against their arch-rivals was the first of the Erik ten Hag reign, with no doubt plenty of United players eager to impress their new coach against Victory.

Although a handful of key names are missing from the United squad, most obviously Cristiano Ronaldo, there will still be several global megastars in action including David de Gea, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane.

The game will not be the first time Victory have hosted high-profile English opposition at the MCG, with over 95,000 fans in attendance for their 2013 showdown against Liverpool.

Player in focus

With pre-season only a few weeks young, a match like this gives an opportunity to a range of players to shine on the global stage.

In previous fixtures, it’s been a bolter who has been an unlikely star in a marquee match up of this nature with Seb Pasquali’s performance setting up a springboard for a move abroad.