Twelve of Manchester United’s stars received very little rest at the end of the long and arduous league season before being whisked away to all parts of the globe on international duty. From Argentina to Armenia and the Ivory Coast, United players were in action. But how did they fare? Let’s take a look at the results:
Argentina: Sergio Romero
Argentina's number one Sergio Romero kept a clean sheet in his side's friendly win over Brazil in Melbourne, though was an unused substitute in the subsequent thrashing of Singapore. Marcos Rojo was not involved as he continues to recover from the injury that kept him out of the end of United’s season.
Armenia: Henrikh Mkhitaryan
Armenia captain Henrikh Mkhitaryan netted a brace as his side romped to a friendly win over St. Kitts and Nevis, though things didn't go at all well in their World Cup qualifier away in Montenegro. He laid on the assist for Armenia's only goal; unfortunately it came after Montenegro had already scored four.
Belgium: Marouane Fellaini
It was a rather more productive international break for Marouane Fellaini, who came off the bench to net the winner in Belgium's 2-1 friendly win over the Czech Republic in Brussels, before playing the full 90 as his side defeated Estonia in a World Cup qualifier.
England: Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford
England rescued a last-gasp draw against Scotland in their World Cup qualifier, but only after Marcus Rashford had been substituted after a rather ineffectual performance on the right of the attack; Chris Smalling played the full 90 in defence. Both were dropped for the subsequent friendly against France, with Phil Jones handed a start on the right of a back three. England went on to lose 3-2, with Jesse Lingard an unused substitute for the second game running.
France: Paul Pogba
Paul Pogba started all three of France’s matches over the international break, but not all went particularly well. Friendly wins over Paraguay and England bookended a stunning World Cup qualifying defeat to Sweden, who have now moved ahead of Les Bleus at the top of their group.
Italy: Matteo Darmian
Matteo Darmian started and finished both of Italy's matches on the right side of a back four. He's got every reason to be satisfied with his work, with Italy keeping two clean sheets in 3-0 and 5-0 wins over Uruguay and Liechtenstein respectively.
Ivory Coast: Eric Bailly
Eric Bailly had a miserable evening in Rotterdam in the Ivory Coast's only match of the break — and he only played the second half. He was introduced as a substitute after the Netherlands found themselves three goals up, and they went on to score twice more before the final whistle. Ivory Coast had no reply, eventually succumbing to a heavy 5-0 defeat.
Netherlands: Daley Blind
Daley Blind didn't miss a minute of the Netherlands' action over the break, starting and finishing both the 5-0 friendly victory over the Ivory Coast, and the 5-0 World Cup qualifying win over Luxembourg. Not too shabby.
David de Gea was omitted from the Spain squad that drew with Colombia, though returned between the sticks for their 2-1 World Cup qualifying win against Macedonia. Neither Ander Herrera nor Juan Mata received callups, though United target Álvaro Morata came off the bench to net a late equaliser in the Colombia friendly.