Chris Smalling explains why he is relishing Manchester United's pre-season schedule

Manchester United's Chris Smalling in action with Bournemouth's Benik Afobe

Part of Manchester United's pre-season sees them facing Manchester City, Borussia Dortmund and Galatasaray.

Manchester United's Chris Smalling in action with Bournemouth's Benik Afobe

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling seems to be relishing facing top quality opponents during the club's pre-season campaign.

United prepare for life under new manager Jose Mourinho with a pre-season tour of Asia where they will take on Manchester City, Borussia Dortmund and Galatasaray.

England's Chris Smalling celebrates after scoring their first goal

Smalling told the official Manchester United website: "The tour is going to be a great test and it’s great to be able to play high-calibre teams.

"From the off, we want to get up to that standard where we are dominating the very best of teams, so it’s good to be playing them so early on in our pre-season programme."

Certainly the selection of opposition on the pre-season tour is of a good standard.

United will be expecting to be competing with their near neighbours for the Premier League title, while Dortmund will be back in the Champions League next season and have generated a tremendous pedigree over the past decade, and Galatasaray rarely miss out on qualification for the Champions League. 

New Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho poses ahead of the press conference

The main objective of pre-season will be for United to get themselves up to speed for the start of the new campaign and adapt to Mourinho's way of playing so they can hit the ground running, as they will look to improve on their disappointing three years since their last Premier League title triumph. 

One would anticipate that Mourinho would want a strong pre-season from his side, as his title-winning teams have often started the season strongly and been very hard to catch as a result. It is hard to think that he would want anything less from his United side in his first season at the helm at Old Trafford. 

New Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho poses ahead of the press conference

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