Man United News: Mason Greenwood, Paul Pogba, Donny van de Beek

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We still have 11 days to go until Manchester United commence their 20/21 season, kicking it off against Crystal Palace. It’s still very quiet on the transfer front, so today we’ll cover some MUFC news items that encompass a wide array of topics instead of transfer market talk.

I take it most of you have already seen the zebra themed 3rd kit, modeled first by David Beckham? Also, if you haven’t checked out our MUFC season preview, go to this link.

We start with young forward Mason Greenwood who, along with Manchester City’s Phil Foden, got sent home early from international duty in disgrace, due to their sneaking young women into the England national team’s hotel. Found to be in blatant violation of the team’s COVID-19 precautionary protocols, Greenwood issued a public apology today.

“Having now had the chance to reflect on what’s happened, I can only apologise to everyone for the embarrassment I have caused,” Greenwood said in a statement issued by the club.

“It was irresponsible of me to break the Covid-19 protocols which are in place to protect players, staff and the public. In particular, I want to apologise to Gareth Southgate, for letting him down, when he had shown great trust in me.

“Playing for England was one of the proudest moments in my life and I only have myself to blame for this huge mistake.”

“I promise my family, the fans, Manchester United and England that this is a lesson I will learn from.”

Both Greenwood and Foden were fined £1,360 for the breach of coronavirus rules, and received a public reprimand from their clubs, and England manager Gareth Southgate.

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Turning to some better news for Greenwood, he did make at least one preseason watch list of sorts. According to Spreadex, a data analysis and projections website, he’s among the top 20 candidates to win the Golden Boot award this season.

Greenwood places in the final slot, with an expected goal range of 10-11.5 while a United trio were stacked back to back to back in the middle. Marcus Rashford was 11th, Anthony Martial 12th and Bruno Fernandes 13th on the list.

Speaking of Fernandes, he’ll be part of a starting midfield triumvirate with Paul Pogba and new arrival Donny van de Beek this season. How will they all get on? NBC Sports, the Premier League broadcast rights carrier in the United States, asked that question in their United season preview article.

NBC designated “Fitting Paul Pogba into the team” as the top United key to the season, writing:

With Donny van de Beek arriving and Pogba yet to agree a new contract at Man United, it will be intriguing to see how this plays out. He developed a promising partnership, at times, with Bruno Fernandes during project restart but he also made a few big errors.

Pogba wants to stay at United, according to his agent, but with Fernandes pulling the strings in central midfield, do United want Pogba to stay? His quality is undoubted but slotting him into midfield alongside Fernandes and a more defensive player just about strikes the right balance.

That’s really what United have been trying to figure out ever since they broke the then world transfer fee record to bring #Pogback in 2016- how do you maximize the talents and abilities of the Frenchman?

Speaking of Van de Beek, check out the sensational send-off he received from Ajax supporters, once he completed his international duty with the Netherlands.

He’ll now join up with the rest of his teammates, and prepare for the season.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly contributes to WGN TVSports IllustratedChicago Now and SB Nation.

You can follow Banks, a former writer for Chicago Tribune.comon Twitter and his cat on Instagram.

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