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Manchester United ‘struck by Covid outbreak just HOURS before game against Newcastle’

Man United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer without his THREE assistants Michael Carrick, Mike Phelan and Kieran McKenna for Newcastle clash after his staff were hit by a Covid outbreak… with reserve keeper Lee Grant having to step in as goalkeeping coach

  • Ole Gunnar Solskajer’s three assistants missed Sunday’s match with Newcastle 
  • United’s Michael Carrick, Mike Phelan and Kieran McKenna were all absent 
  • The club’s backroom staff was hit by a coronavirus outbreak before the game
  • Lee Grant, United’s reserve keeper, was also named among coaches on bench 

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was without his three main assistants for Sunday’s Premier League clash after a coronavirus outbreak among the club’s coaching staff just hours before the match.

Nicky Butt and Mark Dempsey had to step in to join Solskjaer’s staff on the bench after Michael Carrick, Mike Phelan and Kieran McKenna all missed the game.

Coach Darren Fletcher was also absent while United’s reserve keeper Lee Grant had to fill in as goalkeeping coach alongside Nathan Bishop with regular coaches Richard Hartis and Craig Mawson also forced to miss the match.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was without his three assistants for Sunday’s game with Newcastle

Michael Carrick (left), Kieran McKenna (2nd from right) and Mike Phelan (right) were all absent

Michael Carrick (left), Kieran McKenna (2nd from right) and Mike Phelan (right) were all absent

Lee Grant (far right) stepped in as a goalkeeping coach alongside Nathan Bishop (far left)

Lee Grant (far right) stepped in as a goalkeeping coach alongside Nathan Bishop (far left)

UNITED’S BENCH STAFF FOR THE GAME

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Nicky Butt (coach), Mark Dempsey (coach), Steve McNally (doctor), Tom Green (analyst), Lee Grant (goalkeeping coach) and Richard Merron (physio)

Absent: Michael Carrick, Mike Phelan, Kieran McKenna, Darren Fletcher Richard Hartis, Craig Mawson

United confirmed earlier on Sunday that a number of their first-team coaches would miss the match at Old Trafford as they had to go into self-isolation.

A club statement read: ‘Nicky Butt and Mark Dempsey will join Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on the bench this evening due to some of the coaching staff having to isolate.’

Sunday’s match never seemed to be in any doubt of being called off as the outbreak appeared to have solely disrupted the backroom staff at United.

Those involved are said to have tested positive for Covid-19 last week – and were not in attendance for United’s Europa League win against Real Sociedad in midweek.    

Former United player Butt is the club’s head of first-team development at United, acting as the bridge between the youth system and Solskjaer’s squad.  

He reports directly to the United boss, and is an ex-reserves coach at Old Trafford. 

Dempsey, meanwhile, has been a key member of Solskjaer’s support team at both Molde and Cardiff. 

It is not yet known whether any of the coaches who missed Sunday’s match have contracted coronavirus. 

Nicky Butt stepped in as a coach with a number of United's backroom staff testing positive

Nicky Butt stepped in as a coach with a number of United’s backroom staff testing positive

Mark Dempsey has previously worked alongside Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Cardiff and Molde

Mark Dempsey has previously worked alongside Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Cardiff and Molde

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Manchester United 'struck by Covid outbreak just HOURS before game against Newcastle'

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