Soccer

Darren Fletcher’s new role and Shola Shoretire chat spotted in Man Utd training

Manchester United are set to welcome AC Milan to Old Trafford on Thursday night, in a match that has all the big-name pedigree of a Champions League clash.

For this season however, the two European heavyweights will slog it out in the Europa League, with a place in the quarter finals up for grabs.

Ahead of their visit, United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer spoke of his admiration for the Italian giants, whilst also acknowledging how tricky they will make it for his players.

He said: "I have had the ultimate adoration for AC Milan for many years. They have traditions and history, absolute quality, a class act.

"They have rebuilt again and are really challenging at the top and it's nice to see them up there.”

Solskjaer took training on Wednesday on a historic day at United, as the club confirmed the appointments of their first ever technical and football directors.

John Murtough will become the football director, liaising with Solskjaer and vice chairman Ed Woodward, while ex-United midfielder Darren Fletcher will take on a more technical role.

But as well as a busy day in the boardroom, there was work to be done on the Carrington training pitches. Here's what Star Sport spotted as Solskjaer makes his final preparation for the Rossoneri.

Fletcher's new role

Solskjaer confirmed in his pre-match press conference that Fletcher would continue to be present during training sessions, although hinted it would be for more analytical purposes, rather than coaching.

Since his return to the club, the former Scotland international has been a vocal contributor on the sidelines, but looked much more reserved as players carried out a possession drill.

Hands in pockets, United's new technical director took in the drill in silence, ready to report his findings.

Valuable experience

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  • Stood in between the club's captain and one of their greatest ever midfielders, Shola Shoretire must have been pinching himself during the rondo drills at Carrington.

    17-year-old Shoretire has just two senior appearances, compare that to Harry Maguire and Michael Carrick's 1134. The young midfielder made sure to get some words of wisdom from fellow Geordie Carrick and it now remains to be seen whether he will be get another chance on Thursday.

    All eyes on Amad

    With the squad split into two groups, Solskjaer made his way over to the one including January signing Amad.

    The Norwegian then proceeded to stand just behind the winger, keeping a close eye on the talented youngster.

    Shortly after, Amad would team up with Bruno Fernandes in the middle of a possession drill, pushing the ball past Aaron Wan-Bissaka, before putting in a challenge on Nemanja Matic.

    He then jokingly tried to throw Fernandes to the floor, he certainly doesn't seem overawed and Solskjaer saw it first-hand.

    Shoretire talks

    Shoretire made sure to reference fellow academy graduate Mason Greenwood, when he made his senior debut earlier this year.

    And that came as no surprise after he revealed the key piece of advice that had helped him work his way through the development phases at the club.

    "One thing he's always said to me, you always miss 100 per cent of the shots you don't take," he said in January.

    It looks like the advice is still coming thick and fast for Shoretire, with Greenwood seen chatting to the youngster for almost a minute before the session really got started.

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