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Neville: Pre-season is the time to impress Moyes

19 June 2013 14:34

Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville has urged the club's current players to make the most of pre-season under new boss David Moyes.

Moyes – who left Everton to join United as Alex Ferguson's replacement at the end of the season – will run the rule over his players for the first time over the next two months.

And Neville has advised the squad to do their best to make an early impression on the new manager.

"Every pre-season is important and every time Manchester United play a match it's important, but this time around for the players they really are starting afresh with a new manager to impress," Neville told the club's official website.

"Obviously David Moyes will have watched them previously and will know a lot about them, but it's only when you actually work closely with somebody that you understand how they work and what they're like.

"He'll be surprised by some players in terms of their level in training – watching players in training is completely different to seeing them in matches.

"Pre-season will be a showground to demonstrate to David what they can do and to try and impress him. You always want to impress the Manchester United manager, but the fact that it's a new one makes it as exciting as ever and it will be demanding and challenging for the players.

"The old manager knew the players like the back of his hand, but they don't have that comfort anymore. They need to impress again."

Manchester United announced another addition to the pre-season schedule on Tuesday, confirming that they will visit Sweden to play AIK at the Friends Arena in Stockholm on August 5.

The Swedish club will be in the middle of their season and the game will take place less than a fortnight before the Premier League opener at Swansea City on the weekend of August 17 and 18.

And Neville, who is part of the coaching staff under England boss Roy Hodgson, believes the match will give Moyes' squad a stern test.

"There is huge passion for Manchester United in Scandinavia and it'll be an occasion everyone over there is looking forward to," he added.

"Friends Arena is a wonderful stadium – I was with England for the opening game there (in November 2012) and it'll be a great atmosphere and a very competitive game.

"Swedish teams work hard and they'll be midway through their season then so they'll be in full flow and fit.

"It'll therefore be a step up for the lads in terms of fitness. I think you always want that in pre-season, though – you want that gradual improvement towards the end of it and just ahead of the Community Shield and first game of the season."

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