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Manchester United latest: England stars to join on US tour; Ferguson’s tribute to Di Stefano

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New Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal wants Wayne Rooney, Danny Welbeck, Phil Jones, Luke Shaw and Chris Smalling to take part in the club’s pre-season tour of the USA, according to The Guardian.

It has been reported that the 62-year-old, who is currently in charge of the Netherlands for the 2014 World Cup finals, wants the England players to be part of the team that will fly out to the US later this month.

Normally, players are granted at least four weeks off following a major tournament, but with the Three Lions having failed to progress beyond the group stage, the players are expected to be part of the United side who will feature in friendly matches Stateside.

On Monday, United unveiled their new home kit for the 2014-15 season. In a statement on their official website, the club announced: ‘The shirt welcomes the return of the white collar, which for the first time is a ribbed crew neck design. The collar also has a subtle chevron finish, replicating the pattern used on the chest of United shirts from the early 20th century and in more recent times’.

‘On the back of the shirt, below the neck, is a black devil from the club crest’, the statement continued. ‘Across the back is an engineered mesh in a series of chevrons to again emphasise the importance of the shape to United’.

Meanwhile, both Sir Alex Ferguson and Sir Bobby Charlton have paid tribute to the departed Real Madrid legend Alfredo di Stefano.

Di Stefano passed away on Monday at the age of 88, having suffered a heart attack on Saturday. The former Argentina and Spain international helped Madrid win the European Cup five times in a row between 1956 and 1960.

‘The great question which always comes up is ‘who are the greatest players?’ Ferguson told Sky Sports. ‘There is a phalanx of great ones – Cruyff, Maradona, Pele, Puskas and Di Stefano. Di Stefano was one of the greatest in my mind’.

England and Red Devils legend Charlton told United’s official website: ‘He was somebody I really respected, having watched him from the stands at the Bernabeu and then played against him.

‘I have many fond memories of my time with Alfredo and feel privileged to be able to call him a good friend. The footballing world has lost a great player and a great man’.

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