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United end pre-season tour with loss to Barcelona

Neymar scored the only goal of the game.

International Champions Cup 2017 - FC Barcelona v Manchester United Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Manchester United suffered their first loss of the pre-season campaign on Wednesday evening, as they went down 1-0 to Barcelona. Neymar scored the only goal of the game midway through the first half, the Brazilian capitalising on some rather unsightly United defending by jinking his way through to goal and slotting beyond a helpless David de Gea.

It was, by all accounts, a rather lacklustre performance from José Mourinho’s men, and the manager seemed to agree. Quoted in the Guardian, Mourinho said:

“It was an open game, we didn’t defend well. I’m not happy. But in the second half lots of changes for them and for us, but both teams play for the result we tried to equalise, they tried to keep the ball, possession and defend well so in second half the match was positive.”

Nevertheless, he’ll probably be generally quite chuffed with how the American tour has gone overall. Four games played and five victories — including over Manchester City and Real Madrid — will have certainly been good for boosting morale, as well as offering all-important opportunities tactical experimentation alongside the obvious fitness gains.

United now head back to Europe for two further friendlies: the first comes against Norway's Vålerenga in Oslo on Sunday, the second against Italy's Sampdoria three days later in Dublin. They then head to Skopje for the Super Cup final against Real Madrid the following Tuesday, before the season gets underway in anger with a Premier League encounter at home to West Ham.