Tahith Chong opened the scoring for Manchester United at Derby. Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images
DERBY, England — Tahith Chong and Facundo Pellistri got the goals as Manchester United kicked-off their preseason schedule with a 2-1 win over Derby County at Pride Park.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team scored either side of half-time before Colin Kazim-Richards got one back for Wayne Rooney’s Championship side.
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Tom Heaton impressed on his first appearance since re-joining the club this summer while Jesse Lingard looked sharp after returning from his loan spell at West Ham United despite only returning to training late last week.
With the majority of Solskjaer’s stars on holiday after Euro 2020, he picked a team with a mixture of first-team regulars and youngsters as he prepares for the start of the new Premier League season in a months’ time.
Heaton, who has returned to the club on a free transfer from Aston Villa, started in goal behind a back four which included Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Brandon Williams and Axel Tuanzebe.
Juan Mata, captain for the day, and Mason Greenwood were also named in the team alongside academy graduates Teden Mengi, Dylan Levitt, Anthony Elanga, James Garner and Chong.
It was Chong who gave United the lead in the 18th minute, robbing the ball from Max Bird in the penalty area before scoring at the second attempt after his first effort was saved by Derby goalkeeper Kelle Roos.
Chong is set to spend next season away from Old Trafford after agreeing a season-long loan deal with Championship side Birmingham but took his chance to impress after being given the opportunity to stay at United during preseason.
Solskjaer made nine changes at half-time with only centre-backs Tuanzebe and Mengi keeping their places.
Lee Grant, Alex Telles, Nemanja Matic, Andreas Pereira and Lingard were among those who came off the bench and it wasn’t long before it was 2-0.
Shola Shoretire burst through the middle to set up Facundo Pellistri and the winger rounded Derby substitute keeper David Marshall to score.
Pellistri, 19, spent the second half of last season on loan at Alaves in Spain after joining United from Penarol for €10 million last summer.
Lingard, involved in the build up to Pellistri’s goal, almost created another for Hannibal Mejbri before rattling the crossbar with a fierce drive from the left-hand corner of the penalty area. Kazim-Richards got Derby’s consolation after beating Lee Grant from 20 yards.
United next head for a week-long training camp in the UK before travelling to London for the second preseason friendly against QPR on Saturday.