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How many United players will go to Qatar?

It’s been a long time since Manchester United fans were genuinely optimistic about their fortunes. Since they are unbeaten in pre-season, though, things are looking up for The Red Devils ahead of the new campaign. 

Of course, this season is going to be interrupted by the World Cup and that could have an influence on United. Here we look at how many United players will go to Qatar leaving you free to assess how it could impact the Premier League season as the team battles inevitable fatigue. We will also speculate on which ones will have a longer stay, considering 2022.

England

With Manchester United being the biggest club in England, it feels only natural to start our look at how many United players will go to Qatar with the Three Lions. Regardless of Man United fans booing him, Harry Maguire looks nailed on to be part of Gareth Southgate’s squad. Beyond Maguire, none of the other United boys are nailed on. 

Luke Shaw is probably best positioned to join Maguire on the plane. The other two names that spring to mind are the attacking duo of Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho; neither have been involved in the England squad of late and, seemingly, they need to rip things up in the first month or two of the domestic campaign to force their way back in.

Portugal

Boy, there has been a lot of talk about a Portuguese Manchester United this summer that has focussed on a ‘will he, won’t he’ over whether or not he’ll stay. There will be no rumours swirling ahead of Qatar 2022 about Cristiano Ronaldo, though – he will not only be on the Portuguese plane but he’ll be a key player for Fernando Santos’ men. 

Bruno Fernandes is another absolute shoo-in, while Diogo Dalot is a maybe right now. Given his likely limited playing time, we think he could miss out.

Argentina

Manchester United have had a few Argentinians on their books over the years and the recent of addition of Lisandro Martinez means they will likely have representation in the Argentinian camp at a World Cup again. Martinez’s international career is only in the early stages with the 5’9 centre back only having seven caps under his belt. Notably though, of the last four caps earned the team have recorded a clean sheet in three of them; that shouldn’t – and won’t – go unnoticed. Young hotshot Alejandro Garnacho is another Argentine but a World Cup isn’t going to come his way; not this time round at least!

Brazil

From one South American country to another and this time we’re looking at the tournament favourites, Brazil. For United, two players could yet make the trip to Qatar as part of the Brazilian squad. The first is Fred, who we expect to be joining the squad bar injuries changing plans; he might have faced a fair bit of ridicule during his Old Trafford career but is a big player for Brazil in the middle of the park and already has 27 caps. The slightly left field option for Brazil is Alex Telles. He has been in recent squads but without being hugely involved. His chances won’t be helped to sitting on the bench so it will be interesting to see what unfolds.

Spain

Despite United having a couple of Spanish youngsters on their books, the only player that is likely to join the Spanish squad is David De Gea – even then it’s not a guarantee; that in itself is a tragedy given his performance levels for Man United. De Gea has 45 caps for Spain but has spent recent time either not in the squad or warming the bench. With that in mind, he might go but don’t expect him to play.

Denmark

In the Danish Qatar World Cup squad lays the potential for a beautiful story to close it’s loop; the story we refer to is, of course, Christian Eriksen. After the harrowing scenes we saw at the last European Championships we weren’t sure if Eriksen would survive. Only a handful realistically thought he’d play again and nobody expected him back amongst the very elite. He proved everyone wrong. He impressed at Brentford, stepped up to United, and, with Qatar coming, is highly likely to feature on a global stage once again. 

France

United has lost one player that was guaranteed to be part of the France squad in Qatar 2022 in the shape of Paul Pogba. That leaves Raphael Varane and United fans will be desperate to see him get on that plane; it will mean he’s been fit and firing for the club, which is needed. With 86 appearances for Les Bleus know what he is capable of. The question marks come when you look at how many minutes Varane might get and the depth France have at CB!

Netherlands

Last but not least we turn our attention to the Netherlands, which will obviously be something that comes under close inspection given the manager, Erik Ten Hag, and the Dutch contingent he’ll be working with, which might grow should Frankie De Jong join. 

As for players in the building, Tyrell Malacia has earned caps this month taking his overall tally to five – although he has impressed in that short period of time. The other is Donny van de Beek; after an underwhelming start for United, ETH has been backed as the man to whip him back into shape. If that happens, van de Beek could yet make the cut.

Written by Thomas Hein

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