Luke Shaw says Manchester United’s pre-season tour of China is integral to his chances of starting the club’s first Premier League game of the season against AFC Bournemouth.
Shaw made his long-awaited comeback after a gruesome leg break suffered last season in a 2-0 friendly win over Wigan ahead of United’s trip to China for their pre-season tour.
And while for many outsiders the tour – which features International Champions Cup fixtures against Borussia Dortmund and Manchester City – is seen as another attempt by the club to boost their market in Asia, Shaw says it is a crucial opportunity for him and his team-mates to prove their worth to manager Jose Mourinho.
“It’s about minutes but we want to impress our fans with the way we’re playing and we also want to impress the new manager, to show him what we can do and fight to get into the starting 11,” Shaw was quoted as saying by the Guardian.
“Every pre-season is important for me because I always want to be fit, but of course I’ve been out for 10 months. Everyone needs to look after their body really well.
“When you first come back, there are little niggles and tight areas that you need to look out for. But the main thing is to get through pre-season and make sure you’re fit and ready for that first game.”
Shaw enjoyed a decent outing against Wigan as he helped United to a clean sheet, as signings Eric Bailly and Henrikh Mkhitaryan also featured, and the full-back said the tour was also a good chance for the new boys to embed themselves into the squad.
“The tour helps the new players get away into a new environment and get to know everyone more,” he said.
“But we all get on really well. It’s never a hard time for the new players to come in because everyone is so friendly anyway.”