Several of Manchester United’s first teamers were in international action over the past week. How did they fare? Let’s have a look.
The Three Lions played three World Cup qualifiers over the break, beating San Marino 5-0 (h), Albania 2-0 (a), and Poland 2-1 (h). Having been unused substitutes in the first game, Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw returned to play important roles in the subsequent victories. Shaw laid on a nice assist for Harry Kane’s opener in Albania, while Maguire netted a late winner against Poland.
Dean Henderson was an unused substitute for all three games, unlike Jesse Lingard, who played at least some part in each. Marcus Rashford withdrew from the squad with injury, and has enjoyed a much-needed few days of rest.
Daniel James was on international duty with Ryan Giggs’ Wales, and scored the winning goal in their 1-0 win at home to the Czech Republic. He also played the full 90 in a 3-1 defeat away in Belgium, in which former United man Romelu Lukaku netted from the penalty spot.
Scott McTominay will be forgiven if his legs are feeling a little heavy. He played the full 90 in each of Scotland’s three international games: a 2-2 draw with Austria (h), a 1-1 draw with Israel (a), and a 4-0 win over the Faroe Islands (h).
France played three World Cup qualifiers over the break. They followed up an underwhelming 1-1 draw at home to Ukraine with wins away in Kazakhstan and Bosnia. Anthony Martial featured off the bench in the first, and started the second, in which he laid on a skilful assist for Ousmane Dembélé’s opening goal. Frustratingly, Martial ended up limping out of the game with a knee injury, and didn’t feature against Bosnia.
Paul Pogba featured in all three games, making two starts and one substitute appearance.
Eric Bailly and Amad both featured in Ivory Coast’s 3-0 win away in Niger, but didn’t feature in a 3-1 win over Ethiopia four days later. Both games were part of their Africa Cup of Nations qualification campaign.
Bruno Fernandes’ international break was shorter than expected. Having come off the bench in a 1-0 win over Azerbaijan, he picked up a suspension after being booked in Portugal’s subsequent 2-2 draw with Serbia. He was dismissed by the coaching staff, and flew back to Manchester before Portugal’s 3-1 win in Luxembourg.
Donny van de Beek enjoyed the Netherlands’ trip to Gibraltar: he netted the sixth goal in a whopping 7-0 win, while former United man Memphis Depay scored twice. Van de Beek was also involved off the bench in a 2-0 win at home to Latvia.
David de Gea was an unused substitute in all three of Spain’s qualifying games, having been dislodged from the number one spot by Athletic Bilbao’s young goalkeeper Unai Simón.
Victor Lindelöf played in both of Sweden’s competitive fixtures: a 1-0 win at home to Georgia, and a 3-0 win away in Kosovo.