Manchester United star ORDERED to play in pre-season despite Real Madrid links

Manchester United star David De Gea has been told by manager Louis van Gaal that he needs to start playing in pre-season, reports the Daily Star.

The 24-year-old has been sidelined with a mysterious back injury for the first part of their preparations for the season. However, the 63-year-old has now made it clear that he expects the Spain international to take part in their next match against Barcelona.

“I have good hope he can play against Barcelona,” he said, “That is because we have to build him up. I think he can play (against Barca) and I hope he can.

“He was injured and couldn’t play against San Jose, so I said ‘go stand in the goal so we have a point of direction for my attackers, but don’t do anything to risk your injury’.”

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This comes amid interest from Real Madrid, and the player apparently has his heart set on a move to the Bernabeu. This will cause problems for van Gaal if it goes through, with the Dutchman having already told backup Victor Valdes he can leave Old Trafford [].

If both depart it could leave the Red Devils with only Anders Lindegaard as a senior ‘keeper going in to the season. As such it is important to the former Barcelona boss that he keeps De Gea out of the clutches of Los Merengues, at least until the stopper’s contract ends next summer.

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