Manchester United Football Club continued their pre-season tour unbeaten run on Sunday night, thanks to a penalties victory over Real Madrid. The game as a whole was quite a feisty affair for a friendly, but it was nice to see both sides not holding back as that is the best way to build up all-important fitness.
However, in those types of physical battles, someone is always going to end the match feeling worse for wear. In our case, the man struggling is Ander Herrera.
The Basque-born midfielder had been on the field for less than a minute before taking a heavy blow to the body, and he certainly looked in absolute agony immediately after the challenge. He
He was subbed off straight away, then afterwards, the manager had his say. Jose Mourinho told reporters that Herrera isn’t the type of player to come off so easily so he must have been feeling sore, before adding that it is likely to be a rib injury.
“It must at least be very painful because for Ander to come off, it has to be very painful,” the manager told reporters, including United’s official website. “I want to wait and see what it is.”
“I always say to the players that you don’t risk anything in friendly matches. If you feel something is coming, even if it is a little injury, get off because the result is not important. It was very painful, it was in front of the bench, it was a bad contact. Maybe it is his ribs but I don’t know.”
I just hope it isn’t anything too serious. Building up that match fitness is so vital in pre-season, because you want to get to a certain standard before the competitive matches start next month.
If he’s done for the remainder of our friendly matches then that will pose a real problem come August 12th when we’re taking on West Ham at Old Trafford. Herrera will be behind his teammates, and it will take him a little while to get to the required condition before he’s able to play.
Hopefully, it is just a minor issue and he can continue pre-season as normal, but we’ll just have to wait and see.