Manchester United capped off their pre-season campaign with a 1-1 draw at home to Rayo Vallecano.
Erik ten Hag’s first match in charge at Old Trafford saw a flurry of young players given a run out, as well as new signings Christian Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez.
Rayo Vallecano nearly took the lead after seven seconds when one long ball over the top evaded Ethan Laird and Tom Heaton had to keep out Alvaro Garcia.
The returning Cristiano Ronaldo had Man Utd’s first half chance of the afternoon after Donny van de Beek won the ball high up the pitch, but the Portuguese forward’s left-footed strike sailed harmlessly over.
The Red Devils’ high pressing was continuing to cause Rayo Vallecano problems, with Alejandro Garnacho teeing up Tahith Chong on the edge of the box, with his shot being saved by Stole Dimitrievski.
Former Man Utd striker Radamel Falcao was inches away from breaking the deadlock when an Ivan Balliu cross came his way, but a combination of Martinez and Raphael Varane managed to block his path from within the six yard box.
Half of Old Trafford thought Eriksen had netted his first goal in Man Utd colours when his 20-yard shot looked destined to find the net, but it deflected just the wrong side of Dimitrievski’s post.
Man Utd took the lead shortly after the break when Alex Telles’ shot was spilled by substitute goalkeeper Diego Lopez, and Amad Diallo was on hand to tap in.
Falcao rattled the crossbar moments later as the Spanish side looked to find an immediate response, and they found one soon after when an Isi Palazon shot was well saved by Heaton, but Alvaro Garcia ghosted in behind Laird to equalise.
The Rayo winger nearly grabbed himself a brace after being slipped in on the counter but this time Laird made a great recovery challenge, before again denying Garcia at the far post from a cross.
The visitors looked threatening in the closing stages but nearly conceded on the counter when Zidane Iqbal’s daisy-cutter skimmed the outside of the post.
But neither side could find a further way through and the match ended 1-1. Man Utd will now look forward to their Premier League opener at home to Brighton next Sunday.
GK: Tom Heaton – 7/10 – Made a string of smart stops and was a competent sweeper.
RB: Ethan Laird – 5/10 – Nearly had a nightmare start but recovered fairly well. Looked bright on the ball but was still a bit suspect defensively.
CB: Raphael Varane – 6/10 – Didn’t look too rusty on his return from injury.
CB: Lisandro Martinez – 6/10 – Made to work but did his job well.
LB: Alex Telles – 6/10 – Got about the pitch well. Made some key interceptions.
CM: James Garner – 7/10 – Relished the midfield battle. An impressive performance in the heart of the team.
CM: Donny van de Beek – 5/10 – Ten Hag continually belted instructions at him from the touchline. Didn’t provide a lot in possession but took up a lot of attacking positions, particularly after Ronaldo was substituted.
RM: Tahith Chong – 5/10 – Got a few shots away and linked up well with Laird.
AM: Christian Eriksen – 6/10 – Understandably not as sharp as his teammates given his cameo vs Atletico Madrid on Saturday. Still pinged some decent passes, mind.
LM: Alejandro Garnacho – 7/10 – Looked dangerous whenever he was on the ball. Didn’t hesitate to beat his man and take on defenders.
CF: Cristiano Ronaldo – 5/10 – Started lively but faded quite quickly. Hooked at half-time.
SUB: Amad Diallo (46′ for Ronaldo) – 7/10
SUB: Hannibal (60′ for Eriksen) – 6/10
SUB: Eric Bailly (60′ for Martinez) – 6/10
SUB: Shola Shoretire (74′ for Garnacho) – 5/10
SUB: Zidane Iqbal (74′ for Garner) – 5/10
SUB: Isak Hansen-Aaroen (85′ for Chong) – N/A