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Manchester United provide COVID update after Preston friendly cancelled

Manchester United have provided an encouraging update following the cancellation of their friendly with Preston North End. 

Saturday's game at Deepdale bit the dust after routine testing of the United first-team showed "a small number of suspected positive cases" of COVID-19.

The unnamed members of the first-team were then forced to isolate, pending further tests.

In a brief statement, United said crisis had been averted.

"After further testing yesterday [Thursday] and today [Friday], we can confirm that there are no positive cases within the first-team group," it read.

“Following consultation with the Premier League, they are satisfied that all COVID protocols have been followed correctly and the squad can return to training immediately."

United's next planned pre-season friendly comes at home to Everton on August 7. They begin their Premier League season with the visit of Leeds United to Old Trafford a week later.

Solksjaer is yet to welcome back the full compliment of his squad, with some having been involved in the latter stages of Euro 2020 and the Copa America.

It was also confirmed on Friday that Marcus Rashford could be out until October after it was decided he undergo shoulder surgery.

Speaking after a draw with Brentford on Wednesday, Solskjaer conceded the staggered returns of his players isn't helping his preparations.

"Yes, the boys who have been here are working hard," he said, "And we can see the benefit they're getting but there are still players away so you don't really know how they are, how much they've worked.

"Every year when there's an [international] championship it's a difficult summer but we'll work with the players when they come back."

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Coronavirus Covid-19 Manchester United Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

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