In the first Manchester Derby held outside England, Manchester United edged their rivals Manchester City 2-0 in a pre-season friendly held thousand of kilometres away from home in Houston. With both teams working at getting ready for the Premier League season that begins in three weeks, new signing Romelu Lukaku once again found the back of the net with Marcus Rashford scoring the other before the half time whistle.
Lukaku scored his second goal for the club since his move from Everton to Manchester United that saw the Reds splash nearly $100 million for the Belgian. He scored first, in the 37th minute, to give Manchester United the lead with a neat finish on the half-volley from a narrow angle which exposed the positioning of new goalkeeper Ederson, who recently joined City from Benfica for around $45 million.
Two minutes later, Rashford doubled United’s advantage as he took Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s pass all alone to the right of the penalty area and placed the ball beyond Ederson.
Playing just their first match in the International Champions Cup, Manchester City looked rusty and United ran out comfortable winners with plenty of promise from Rashford and Lukaku of many goals when the seasons gets underway.
Credit to Lukaku: pace in behind and a surprising finish. Ederson’s position is a bit poor, especially in a Pep XI. pic.twitter.com/xYB6sSAHNI
— Bill McLoughlin (@BMcLoughlin93) 21 July 2017
— Patrick (Pa) Ward (@Pa_Ward1) 21 July 2017
“I couldn’t be happier with what he’s doing, and I could not be happier we managed to sign him before the pre-season,” United manager Jose Mourinho said of Lukaku on MUTV. “(He’s a) team player, who holds the ball, who waits for support, who allows the team to leave pressure zones. People look to goals and chances, I have a different perspective.”
Nearly 67,000 fans attended the contest at the NRG Stadium, home of the National Football League’s Houston Texans. United have now won three-in-three in their pre-season matches following 5-2 and 2-1 wins over Los Angeles Galaxy and Real Salt Lake. They will play four more games – against Real Madrid, Barcelona, Valerenga and Sampdoria. Meanwhile City will play three more games against Real Madrid, Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United.