Eric Bailly, who suffered a knee injury in the final summer tour game last week, is not included, while Alexis Sanchez has also not made the cut after picking up a hamstring injury in the Copa America earlier this month – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had expressed hope the Chilean might be back by the time the squad began the European leg of the pre-season schedule.
Lukaku has been heavily linked with a summer transfer to Inter since the end of last season. The Milan club have been unable to put together an acceptable offer, but Juventus have since emerged on the scene as well and the Belgian posted an image on Instagram of himself with agent Federico Pastorello over the weekend alongside the caption, “Soon to be continued.”
Lukaku has also been nursing an injury throughout pre-season that prevented him from playing any part of the Australia and Asia tour. Fitness concerns no doubt remain an issue, although his omission will be unavoidably be tied up in further speculation about his future.
It is otherwise largely the same group that steered United to four wins in four in Australia, Singapore and China, with fans hoping for young trio Mason Greenwood, Angel Gomes and Tahith Chong to continue making an impact. Fellow starlet James Garner has dropped out.
Paul Pogba, still heavily linked with Real Madrid, also remains part of the group and Solskjaer continues to insist that he doesn’t have a problem with the French star, nor has he ever.
Manchester United 26-Man Squad for Friendly vs Kristiansund:
Goalkeepers: David De Gea, Lee Grant, Joel Pereira, Sergio Romero
Defenders: Diogo Dalot, Phil Jones, Victor Lindelof, Marcos Rojo, Luke Shaw, Chris Smalling, Axel Tuanzebe, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Ashley Young
Midfielders: Fred, Angel Gomes, Daniel James, Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata, Nemanja Matic, Scott McTominay, Andreas Pereira, Paul Pogba
Forwards: Tahith Chong, Mason Greenwood, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford
For Solskjaer, Kristiansund represents a special meeting with his home town club in his home country. United Women will also be playing a friendly in Oslo the following day when they meet Norwegian side Valerenga ahead of the new Barclays Women’s Super League campaign.