SHANGHAI – Manchester United will play Premier League top-four rivals Tottenham Hotspur in a pre-season glamour friendly in Shanghai, the Old Trafford club said on Wednesday.
At least six major English clubs will visit China this summer with Manchester City, Newcastle United, West Ham United and Wolverhampton Wanderers taking part in the Premier League Asia Trophy on July 17 in Nanjing and July 20 in Shanghai.
United will face Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs on July 25 in Shanghai, by which time the future of interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is likely to be resolved.
Conditions are likely to be testing in Shanghai that time of year, when temperatures can exceed 30 degrees Celsius (86F) with high humidity and the likelihood of heavy rain.
But the Premier League and clubs see such trips as a prime opportunity to grow their fan bases in China, the world’s second-biggest economy.
This will be United’s fourth visit to Shanghai, the last time being 2016, when Jose Mourinho was in charge.
On the same tour, the first Manchester derby to be played overseas had to be cancelled at the last minute when the pitch at Beijing’s "Bird’s Nest" stadium was deemed unplayable because of rain.
United in January said they were opening a series of "entertainment and experience centres" in China, where they claim to have more than 100 million followers.
Barcelona are also scheduled to visit China in the summer.
Agence France-Presse (AFP)