Ander Herrera

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Ander Herrera to leave Man United

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Ander Herrera has announced he will leave Manchester United on July 1.

[ MORE: Phelan confirmed as assistant ]

The Spanish midfielder, 29, has come to the end of his contract at Old Trafford and revealed he is moving on in a classy video posted on United’s Twitter page. It has yet to be announced, but it is believed Herrera will sign for French giants Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer.

Herrera arrived from Athletic Bilbao in 2014 for $37 million (he spoke to us from United’s training camp in LA that summer) and became the first signing of the Louis Van Gaal era.

He won the FA Cup, Europa League and League Cup during his five seasons at Old Trafford and became a fans favorite for his tough tackling and quality on the ball. He won the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year award for the 2016-17 season, which is voted for by United’s fans.

The Spanish international isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, with plenty of late challenges and a focus on breaking up the play of opponents rather than setting up fluid moves for United. However, the fans warmed to his commitment to the cause and you always feel like he gives 100 percent every single time he’s on the pitch.

During the first few months of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer‘s reign he played a key role alongside Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba in central midfield, but in recent weeks Herrera has been left out due to injury and having others picked ahead of him.

Herrera will be the first of many established names to leave Old Trafford this summer as a huge rebuild continues. He will also be the most beloved player to leave.

Report: Man United’s Herrera to sign with PSG

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Manchester United’s loss is Paris Saint-Germain’s gain.

According to Spanish publication AS, Ander Herrera is set to sign a four-year contract at PSG, after leaving Manchester United this summer on a free transfer. Herrera has allowed his contract to run down, with both he and Man United unable to agree to an extension or a transfer away from the club, resulting in him leaving as a free agent.

The report states Herrera will earn nearly $9 million per season as part of his new contract, a salary figure likely boosted by the lack of transfer fee.

[ MORE: Premier League stats ]

Herrera arrived at Manchester United as one of the great new hopes, a star for his hometown club Athletic Bilbao who led his team to the Europa League and Copa del Rey finals in 2012 and fourth place in La Liga in 2014. Herrera then followed that up with an almost $45 million transfer to Old Trafford. However, under Louis Van Gaal, the Spaniard never took the step necessary in his career to become a star in central midfielder for Man United. He started less than 20 Premier League matches and has only broken the 20-start mark in one season, in 2016-2017, when Man United finished fifth.

The slick passing midfielder showed at times a propensity to score goals and provide creative assists, but too often he was inconsistent, especially in the big matches. Considering that Man United are allowing Herrera to leave on a free transfer, it’s likely a loss that will mainly be felt in the pocketbook, unless Man United fails to find a suitable central midfield replacement.

How will Man City and Man United line up for critical derby?

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There is as much on the line in Wednesday’s Manchester derby than anyone could have hoped for, and the enormous stakes will only feed the excitement on the pitch.

Whereas these big matches often end in cagey draws in the first half of the season with little incentive for the teams to do anything other than avoid losing, a draw won’t do for either side this time around, and there could be goals on the cards. So with everything on the line, how will these teams line up on the field?

[ MORE: Hudson-Odoi injury renews contract talks ]

There are injuries to consider on both sides. Pep Guardiola confirmed that Kevin De Bruyne will not be available tomorrow for Manchester City after his injury against Tottenham left the rest of his season in doubt. Manchester United, meanwhile, will reportedly be without defender Phil Jones after he was withdrawn in the heavy defeat to Everton last time out. Other than that, both squads are fully healthy minus the long-term injury to City goalkeeper Claudio Bravo.

The biggest question for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be how to deploy his back line against the vicious Manchester City attack – particularly on the flanks. He left Ashley Young on the bench each of the last two matches, with natural center-backs Victor Lindelof and Marcos Rojo deputizing at full-back, but that experiment could come to an end with Luke Shaw returning from suspension. In Jones’ absence, Rojo or Lindelof could be moved back to the middle, or Solskjaer could bring Eric Bailly back into the fold after failling to see the field in the last two months. The midfield has also been a conglomeration, with the third spot up in the air next to Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic. Fred and Juan Mata have both seen time, but Ander Herrera will be reportedly returning from his injury and could see the field.

[ MORE: Solskjaer hoping for turnaround ]

For Manchester City, Guardiola’s headache will be constructing his midfield without De Bruyne. He has had Fernandinho in and out of the lineup over the last few weeks due to nagging injuries, and it remains to be seen if he utilizes the defensive midfielder to anchor the formation. Ilkay Gundogan has played deeper when Fernandinho has been absent, and he’s played well in that spot, but at times they still seem to be missing a natural anchor, and it was Fernandinho who came in to replace De Bruyne after his injury.


MANCHESTER UNITED

—– De Gea —–

— Dalot — Rojo — Smalling — Shaw —

—- Matic —- Herrera —-

—- Martial —- Pogba —- Rashford —-

—– Lukaku —–


MANCHESTER CITY

—– Ederson —–

— Walker — Stones — Laporte — Zinchenko —

—– Fernandinho —–

—- Gundogan —- Foden —-

— B Silva —- Aguero — Sterling —


Man Utd team news, injury updates ahead of Barcelona clash

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Manchester United are nearing a return to full(er) strength after yet another lengthy injury crisis, but the majority of those closest to seeing the field are still likely to miss out on Wednesday’s UEFA Champions League quarterfinal first leg against Barcelona.

[ MORE: Solskjaer “cannot see” Paul Pogba leaving Man United this summer ]

Chief among them is Marcus Rashford, who happens to be closest to returning to game action. Man United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer revealed on Tuesday that Rashford participated in a portion of first-team training 24 hours before the clash at Old Trafford, but the 21-year-old sounds a 50-50 doubt at best — quotes from the BBC:

“Hopefully he will be ready. He needed extra warm-up and hopefully he won’t get a reaction. He joined part of (training) at the end, but he couldn’t join the fun part of training.”

Meanwhile, Nemanja Matic is a long shot to feature after he was an unused substitute during the defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers and was then unable to train now a week later.

[ MORE: Klopp enjoying pressure of title race, “loves this season much more” ]

Ander Herrera is “probably out,” according to Solskjaer, while Alexis Sanchez has been officially ruled out of consideration to face his former club on Wednesday.

On a somewhat positive note, full backs Luke Shaw (two games) and Ashley Young (one game) will be available once again despite being suspended from domestic competition.

Injury-ravaged Man Utd use all three subs in first half

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Manchester United used all three of its substitutes in the first 42 minutes of Sunday’s battle with Liverpool at Old Trafford.

The first to leave the match was Ander Herrera, replaced by Ander Herrera in the 21st minute.

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Four minutes later, Jesse Lingard entered the match for an injured Juan Mata.

Not fully fit himself, Lingard was felled in the 42nd. That brought Alexis Sanchez into the match.

We can neither confirm nor deny that the fourth referee has asked Jurgen Klopp to make all of Liverpool’s subs at halftime so he can sit in the stands with the fans.