Previous
Getafe
Valencia
0
3
FT
Game Details
Wigan Athletic
Ipswich Town
1
2
FT
Game Details
Academica de Coimbra
Estoril
2
2
FT
Game Details
Real Madrid
Elche
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Celta Vigo
Deportivo La Coruña
8:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Bayern Munich
SC Paderborn 07
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Eintracht Frankfurt
Mainz
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
TSG Hoffenheim
SC Freiburg
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Werder Bremen
Schalke 04
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Empoli
AC Milan
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Stade de Reims
Marseille
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Stade Rennes
Toulouse
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Arsenal
Southampton
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Cardiff City
AFC Bournemouth
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Derby County
Reading
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Leyton Orient
Sheffield United
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Liverpool
Middlesbrough
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Milton Keynes Dons
Bradford City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Shrewsbury Town
Norwich City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sunderland
Stoke City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Swansea City
Everton
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Fulham
Doncaster Rovers
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Newport County
Swindon Town
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Aberdeen
Livingston
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Falkirk
Rangers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Kilmarnock
St Johnstone
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Partick Thistle
St Mirren
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Ross County
Hibernian
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Clyde
Montrose
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Brescia
Lanciano
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Cittadella
Pro Vercelli
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Crotone
Catania
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Frosinone
US Avellino
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Livorno
Varese
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Modena
Perugia
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Ternana
Bologna
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Trapani
Virtus Entella
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
US Pescara
Latina
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Vicenza
Bari
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Ingolstadt 04
FC Erzgebirge Aue
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
SpVgg Greuther Furth
VfR Aalen
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
St Pauli
TSV Eintracht Braunschweig
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
SV Sandhausen
TSV 1860 Munich
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
AC Ajaccio
Le Havre AC
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Angers
AJ Auxerre
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Arles
Stade Laval
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
AS Nancy Lorraine
Tours
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Dijon FCO
Créteil
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Nimes
Chateauroux
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Orléans
Ajaccio GFCO
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Sochaux
Brest
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Troyes
Niort
6:55 PM GMT
Game Details
Capelle
FC Volendam
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Rijnsburgse Boys
Sparta Rotterdam
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Scheveningen
Lisse
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
VVSB
Vitesse Arnhem
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Spakenburg
NAC Breda
4:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Achilles '29
Twente Enschede
Postp
Game Details
Ajax Amateurs
NEC Nijmegen
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Almere City
ADO Den Haag
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Deltasport
Willem II Tilburg
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Exelsior Maassluis
FC Emmen
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Flevo Boys
DOS '37
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
HHC Hardenberg
RKC Waalwijk
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Kozakken Boys
Sportlust '46
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
ONS Sneek
Dordrecht '90
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
PSV Eindhoven
FC Utrecht
Postp
Game Details
VVV Venlo
FC Eindhoven
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Roda JC Kerkrade
Heerenveen
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sporting Kansas City
Real Estelí
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Portland Timbers
Alpha United
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
César Vallejo
Universitario de Sucre
10:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 2
Game Details
Cerro Porteño
Independiente del Valle
12:15 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0
Game Details
San Martín de San Juan
Argentinos Juniors
11:10 PM GMT
Game Details
Atlante
Mérida
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Correcaminos
At. San Luis
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Lobos BUAP
Oaxaca
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Mineros de Zacatecas
Dorados de Sinaloa
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Santos
Monterrey
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
U.A.N.L
Queretaro
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
UNAM
Toluca
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Veracruz
Chiapas
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
ABC
Goianiense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Boa MG
Luverdense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Bragantino
Icasa
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Joinville
América Mineiro
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Paraná Clube
Avaí
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Vila Nova-GO
AA Ponte Preta
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Ceará
América RN
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
Portuguesa de Desportos
Náutico
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
Sampaio Correa-MA
CR Vasco da Gama
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
Santa Cruz FC
Oeste
12:50 AM GMT
Game Details
Vantforet Kofu
Vissel Kobe
9:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Cerezo Osaka
Nagoya Grampus Eight
10:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Kashiwa Reysol
Sagan Tosu
10:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Rangers de Talca
Palestino
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Universidad de Concepción
Colo Colo
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Next
 Posted by Andy Mitten
Aug 14, 2014

U.S. memories and a return home

Following a dismal 2013-14 campaign under David Moyes, new manager Louis van Gaal will look to get Manchester United back to winning ways.

MANCHESTER -- I left you while en-route to Detroit, the Motor City, which has fallen on hard times. Manchester United were staying there for their preseason game in nearby Ann Arbor, where they beat Real Madrid in front of 109,318 -- the largest crowd to see a soccer game in the United States.

Detroit fascinated me. A city famed for industry, post-industrial decline and music, it had much in common with Manchester. My hometown was all I knew as a kid, but it was experiencing setbacks of its own in the 1970s and '80s. Only last night, a Manchester United fan from South Africa, who first visited in 1982 to watch his fellow Johannesburg resident Gary Bailey, said, "Manchester was an unattractive, desolate place for a visitor back then."

There wasn't much for tourists, but Manchester, as the South African admitted, has changed for the better. I saw a big improvement ahead of the 2002 Commonwealth Games, yet the following year, I was told of Real Madrid players looking out of the coach window on the way to Old Trafford for a Champions League tie and turning up their noses.

Rainy Manchester can be cited as a negative when United or City go for a player against clubs from cities like Monaco, Madrid, Munich or Barcelona, but I've met plenty of players from far and wide who ended liking the city.

Nemanja Vidic, who joined United in January 2006, recently left United for Inter Milan.

For example, in an upcoming United We Stand interview, former club captain Nemanja Vidic told us:

"The first 1 1/2 years in Manchester were hard. We found it hard because we came from a different culture. I'd lived in Belgrade and Moscow. The change wasn't big. Then I came to England, where everything was different. I found it hard.

"I started to enjoy Manchester, especially when my three kids arrived. All our three boys were born in Manchester. We lived in Wilmslow, Cheshire, which was great for families. I had peace in Cheshire and really enjoyed it. Sometimes the weather could be hard, I wouldn't have stayed for nine years if I didn't like it. I made some good friends and found the people to be friendly."

Detroit is down on its luck, but it feels like it has a soul, attitude and identity. I hope it bounces back.

I wanted to leave there for Miami and the final of the preseason tournament, which saw United take on Liverpool, but I needed to get back to Europe on flights I'd long reserved.

August is a busy month for any football journalist, and a magazine wanted a 5,000-word cover story on Real Madrid and Barcelona. That meant a lot of research, but, fortunately, I saw plenty to write about from the Madrid perspective in Michigan and even managed to speak to their president, Florentino Perez. I also conversed with their assistant manager, the erudite Englishman Paul Clement. I'll meet up with him again later in the season. 

- Toe Poke: Fletcher's ice bucket challenge
- Payne: Five questions for Man United
- Okwonga: Januzaj takes Giggs' No. 11 shirt

After researching and writing for a week in Barcelona, I flew to Manchester for the start of the Premier League season and some interviews I had lined up with with Ryan Giggs and a couple of players.

Giggs was friendly and on good form at the Carrington training complex. I first met him when we were both 13, he grew up close by, and we played football against each other.

Having retired after playing nearly 1,000 competitive games for United, he's now getting stuck into his new job as assistant manager. I asked him to talk about going to meet Louis van Gaal for the first time and his initial impressions. He said the one thing that surprised him was the Dutchman's charisma and sense of humour, which doesn't always come across in the media.

Relationships between senior staff at Old Trafford weren't always the best last season, and it will be interesting to see how it all works out under the new manager.

There have been numerous changes in United's staff in recent years, but one permanent fixture has been Kath, the club receptionist for over 40 years. She's great. She calls the players "her boys," and they adore her.

United is an institution, but Sir Alex Ferguson always kept a family heart beating at the core. I tell Kath of any former players I've caught up with, and she loves to hear the stories. Diego Forlan was one of her favourites and, upon learning that he's now in Japan, she tried to speak Japanese.

Kath told me off for not having a son yet, for "with a name like yours, he could be a footballer." My wife would have disagreed and is happy with our two daughters, the eldest of whom I took to her first United game on Tuesday, a friendly against Valencia.

It was a joy to see how a 3-year-old viewed events. She made a beeline for two police horses, which she was allowed to stroke, and was mesmerised by the mascot, "Fred The Red." As the game started, she started singing, "If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands," before hollering "United! United! United!" I loved it. And so did she, for at least 15 minutes, before she asked to go home. I never did hear fans allegedly boo substitute Marouane Fellaini.

Before the match, I spent an hour catching up with friends and acquaintances outside Old Trafford who I'd not seen since last season -- United fans, street workers and even a policeman who gives me feedback on articles.

Flowers adorn a memorial for

You realise it's a community when you're away from it and also when you lose a member. A Warrington man and United fan, known as "Ox," who sold scarves for decades on Sir Matt Busby Way, tragically died in a car accident two weeks ago.

He was a fixture in his usual spot on the busiest part of the busiest thoroughfare approaching Old Trafford, and he will be missed. Fans had attached flowers to the spot where he used to stand.

Speaking to the other souvenir sellers, it annoyed me that I learned more about Ox now that he's died than I did when he was alive. Regular football fans will know that their match-going experience is full of people you say hello to and have two-minute conversations with, but you never really get to know. I'll miss my little chats with Ox.

Andy Mitten

Manchester-born Andy Mitten founded United We Stand in 1989, at age 15. He has written 11 books since his career began in 1995 and visited almost 100 countries while working for numerous magazines and newspapers worldwide. Follow him on Twitter @AndyMitten.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.