Reporting from Bangkok
Ambition, victory, trophy. These three words are on every Manchester United player's mind as the team head into the new English Premier League (EPL) season eager to open a new page of success at the illustrious football club.
The Red Devils are beginning their pre-season with a highly-anticipated friendly tie with arch-rivals Liverpool in Bangkok on Tuesday (12 July), and morale is high among the senior squad, as they begin training under new manager Erik ten Hag.
The Dutchman replaced interim boss Ralf Rangnick at the end of a disappointing 2021/22 EPL season in which Man United struggled to a sixth-place finish with their lowest-ever points total (58 points) since the EPL began in 1992. They were also a massive 35 points off champions Manchester City, an indication of how far the 13-time EPL champions had fallen.
Expectations are high for ex-Ajax manager ten Hag to set the Red Devils on the road back to success this season, and left-back Luke Shaw has already been impressed by his new boss just two weeks into pre-season training.
"It's clear that he's a top, top manager," the 26-year-old England international said during a meet-and-greet fan session organised by Man United's official spirits partner Chivas Regal at The Athenee Hotel on Sunday.
"He has a structure to play the way he wants us to play. We haven't had that for quite a while, and it was clear to see last season, which was extremely disappointing.
"We have to bounce back, and he has been working us extremely hard, but I think we need it. We're really looking forward to this season because I know it's going to be much better than the last one."
Shaw was joined by with teammates Raphael Varane and Anthony Martial during a question-and-answer segment, and they were each asked to give a word that embodies the Man United team's current mentality.
Varane said "ambition", while Martial offered "victory", before Shaw summed up the squad's rosy outlook with "trophy".
The trio were became a quartet later when left-back Alex Telles joined the fan session, as they signed shirts, caps and scarves, as well as posed for photographs with the fans.
Han Keong's trip is hosted by Manchester United's official spirits partner, Chivas Regal.
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