SHANGHAI, China, Sporting Alert – Manchester United were thrashed 4-1 by Borussia Dortmund, while Arsenal finished 1-1 against RC Lens in pre-season games on Friday.
At the Shanghai Stadium in China in their 2016 International Champions Cup opener, Jose Mourinho watched his Red Devils side totally being outplayed by a fitter and much sharper Borussia Dortmund squad, which scored two goals on either side of 45 minutes.
The German club took the lead in the 19th minute when Gonzalo Castro took advantage of some poor goalkeeping from Sam Johnstone and vulnerable defending by the Manchester United to fire into the top of the net.
Jesse Lingard had a glorious chance to level the game, but the England international failed to beat the keeper in the 23rd minute.
The Premier League side was punished again in the 35th minute when striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored from the penalty spot, after stand-in captain Antonio Valencia handled the ball inside the area.
Borussia Dortmund extended their lead in the second half through Ousmane Dembele before United pulled a goal back through Henrikh Mkhitaryan, who broke his duck for his new club to make it 3-1.
However, Castro blasted home a superb second effort late in the game to extended the Germans big advantage.
Mourinho didn’t seem troubled by the performance, but he was not happy about the result.
“I think in pre-season the team that wins is always the team that is in an advanced stage of the preparation,” he said on Manchester United official website at www.manutd.com.
“Always. Never the best team, always the team that is in advance. It was too obvious.
“Nobody likes to lose. We’re not happy with that but happy with the 90 minutes we have in our legs.
“It was very important to compete in difficult circumstances with the weather and the opponents and that was good for us.”
Mourinho added: “When you’re playing a team like Borussia Dortmund, that starts before us and, of course, are one of the good teams in Europe, it is obviously more difficult.
“The players are frustrated as nobody likes to lose. Even if you say it’s not a problem, you don’t like to lose – even in friendlies. In reality, I was expecting a very difficult match.”
Manchester United will next be in action against Manchester City in their second game in the 2016 International Champions Cup on Monday.
Visit manutd.com for more information about the club’s pre-season.
Meanwhile, at Stade Bollaert-Delelis, fellow Premier League outfits Arsenal were held 1-1 by RC Lens in the Gunners’ first trip to Lens since 1998.
RC Lens took the lead in the 37th minute through Mathias Autret and looked well on course to securing the win until forward Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain netted the equaliser to earn Arsenal a draw in the first friendly of pre-season.
Arsene Wenger and the Gunners will depart for the United States on Monday for the pre-season battle against the MLS All-Stars at Avaya Stadium on July 29.
Reporter Omar Allen contributed to this article as well.
Visit Arsenal.com for more information about the club’s pre-season.