Why Raphael Varane is unlikely to start v Southampton

Raphael Varane was unveiled as the club’s third signing of the summer in front of the Old Trafford faithful ahead of last weekend’s Premier League curtain-raiser against Leeds United.

It was a fitting start to the afternoon as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer oversaw an emphatic victory over their fierce rivals, scoring a whopping five goals against Marcelo Bielsa’s side for the second season in a row.

Varane was not involved in the encounter but has been in full training with his new teammates since Monday this week and should make the trip to Southampton tomorrow.

The 28-year-old is, however, unlikely to start the game against Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side, owing largely to his lack of pre-season and match fitness.

According to Marca, the four-time Champions League winner returned to training at Real Madrid from his holiday on July 23, just four days before an agreement between Manchester United and the Spanish club was announced on ManUtd.com. Varane, subsequently, stopped pre-season preparations with Real Madrid.

Read more: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tells star he is staying at Man Utd

An issue with Varane’s visa caused a delay in the player travelling to Manchester and once that was resolved, he had to quarantine for five days before undergoing his medical.

It wasn’t until 17 days after Manchester United’s initial announcement that a deal was completed, leaving him short of Victor Lindelöf, who had already returned from his break.

Therefore, it’s likely that Varane will be given more time to prepare for his full Premier League debut and watch on at St. Mary’s, as United’s Swede takes the driver’s seat next to Harry Maguire.

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