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Luke Shaw relishes “strange” change at Manchester United since Europa League exit



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Credit: Manchester United

Luke Shaw has spoken about a key change at Manchester United since the club exited the Europa League last month.

Manchester United have their sights fully set on a top-four Premier League finish in order to clinch Champions League qualification for next campaign.

One reason that has compounded the importance of a top-four finish is that Erik ten Hag‘s men crashed out of the Europa League at the quarter-final stage last month, losing 5-2 to Sevilla across two legs.

Read More: Erik ten Hag explains first step Manchester United must take to reach Man City

The second leg was a particularly embarrassing affair, with the club losing 3-0 on the night after the first leg ended in a 2-2 draw after late goals from the Spanish opposition saw them claw back a two-goal deficit at Old Trafford.

One positive that has been taken from the exit, however, is the fact that in the Premier League run-in, United have had back-to-back free weekdays, allowing the side to rest in between weekend league fixtures.

Luke Shaw, speaking to club media earlier this week about the rest breaks, has explained that the change in schedule is a welcome one.

“It’s been really strange to be honest – we’d much prefer to be in the Europa League but it’s been good to have a little bit of rest, something different,” Shaw said.

“This season has been very challenging, there have been a lot of games and not really much time to rest. Us as a team feel like we’re benefiting from a whole week [of preparation].

“We’ve been training hard and working on what we’ve got to do in the game at the weekend and I think that’s been good to have a longer period of training time.

“The manager can fully get his tactical ideas across on how he wants us to deliver in the games.”

Manchester United have three fixtures left this season in the Premier League, facing Bournemouth away before welcoming Chelsea and Fulham to Old Trafford to round off Ten Hag’s first league campaign.

Then, United will finish the season with a blockbuster FA Cup final, facing treble-chacing Manchester City.