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Kagawa and Powell set for United tour

Sir Alex Ferguson has confirmed that new signings Shinji Kagawa and Nick Powell will join Manchester United on their pre-season tour of South Africa and China.

The duo are two of the few certainties for the tour, with several players set to be rested after Euro 2012 while others, including Ryan Giggs and David de Gea, are set for Olympic action.

Besides those absentees, Nemanja Vidic and Chris Smalling will not be considered due to injury, and Darren Fletcher has been sidelined long-term with a bowel complaint.

"It's obviously very difficult in a year when we have had a Euro tournament and we also have the Olympics this year,'' said Ferguson. "The final squad hasn't been decided yet but we will be taking the strongest team we have available.

"We are all looking forward to the pre-season tour. I am delighted that our new newest signings, Shinji Kagawa and Nick Powell, will be in the travelling squad along with more established players such as Rio Ferdinand, Michael Carrick and Ji Sung-Park.''

Ferguson added: "I have always said how important it is to get a good pre-season behind us. We saw the impact a good pre-season had on the start of last year's campaign.''

United have announced a fixture with Barcelona in Gothenburg on August 8, but are still waiting to announce a second fixture for their time in China. It has already been announced that they will play against Didier Drogba's Shanghai Shenhua side in the other fixture in China.

In other news announced by the club. Maurice Watkins has stepped down from the board of Manchester United after 28 years at the club.

Chief executive David Gill said: "Maurice has been a source of calm, measured advice and someone who always has the genuine interests of the club at heart.''

Meanwhile, 21-year-old Northern Ireland international Oliver Norwood has rejected the club's offer of a new contract to join Championship side Huddersfield, signing a three-year deal at the Galpharm Stadium.


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