Manchester United’s new £47million goalkeeper Andre Onana suffered a nightmare start to his Old Trafford career against RC Lens on Saturday. Onana was caught out from just inside the United half as the hosts fell behind in the first half of their penultimate pre-season fixture.
There was a buzz in the air in M16 after Rasmus Hojlund took to the pitch before kick-off, marking his £72million arrival from Atalanta.
Erik ten Hag fielded a strong team undoubtedly not far off his starting line-up when Wolves visit Old Trafford at the start of the Premier League season in nine days.
Onana and Mason Mount made their first starts on home soil in a star-studded side featuring Lisandro Martinez, Casemiro, Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford.
But all of the excitement came from a lively Lens away end in the 23rd minute when the Ligue 1 outfit took the lead in astonishing fashion.
Florian Sotoca pounced onto a misplaced pass from Diogo Dalot directed at Raphael Varane, rifling an audacious effort from inside the United centre circle.
Onana, assuming his usual position outside his area, couldn’t retreat in time and was left jumbled in his net as Lens celebrated their surprise opener.
Mount, also making his Old Trafford bow, had a moment of his own to forget just before Lens took the lead.
Onana showcased his ball-playing ability by pinging a delightful pass out to Bruno Fernandes under pressure before the new United captain did the same, aiming a ball through to Alejandro Garnacho on the wing.
Garnacho burst towards the goal at an angle and placed the ball on a silver platter for Mount, who had the whole goal at his mercy from around seven yards.
But former Chelsea star, who became Ten Hag’s first addition of the summer in a £60m deal, fluffed his lines, failing to sort his feet out as the chance to unofficially open his United account went begging.
United are in action one more time before the curtains of the new campaign rise, facing Athletic Club in Dublin on Sunday.
It’s currently unclear how Ten Hag will approach the game, with many paying supporters hoping to see the big names on the pitch against Lens again.
The Dutchman will likely field a second side consisting of those on the bench at Old Trafford, including Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Harry Maguire, Christian Eriksen and Jadon Sancho.
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