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27th Jul 2018

Fred joins Man United tour and is given official squad number

Simon Lloyd

Something for Jose Mourinho to look marginally less miserable about

Manchester United’s squad for their preseason tour of the United States has been boosted by the arrival of new signing Fred. The midfielder was confirmed as a United player while at the World Cup with Brazil and has met up with he new teammates at their base in Los Angeles.

Some United fans assumed that Fred would inherit the club’s number 16 shirt, left vacant by Michael Carrick after he retired from playing and became part of Mourinho’s coaching set-up at the end of last season. However, Fred appears to have become the club’s new number 17.

The 25-year-old was pictured wearing training kit marked with a number 17 at UCLA on Thursday. The shirt number had previously belonged to Daley Blind, who returned to Ajax earlier this month.

According to the Manchester Evening News, United are yet to confirm the shirt numbers for their other two signings this summer, Diogo Dalot and Lee Grant. The same report points out that Dalot’s training kit has featured the number 20 during their tour of the States, while Grant has worn 13.

Along with Fred, David De Gea also rejoined the United team on Thursday. He has holidayed in the States following Spain’s last-16 exit from the World Cup at the hands of Russia.

Mourinho had recently voiced his concerns over United’s threadbare touring squad this summer. None of the players to have taken part in the World Cup initially flew out to America two weeks ago. The involvement of Paul Pogba, Romelu Lukaku, Marouane Fellaini, Jesse Lingard, Marcus Rashford, Phil Jones and Ashley Young in the tournament’s latter stages means they will play no part at all in the tour.