Manchester United's 2019-20 season could begin with a Europa League qualifier on July 25

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Manchester United will not be playing in the Champions League next season.

The Red Devils’ 1-1 draw against Huddersfield on Sunday means they cannot finish in the Premier League top four.

They’re going to have to settle for the Europa League.

Champions League football looked nearly impossible when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer took over in December but a 12-match unbeaten run put them in a position to compete for a top four spot.

But Man United haven’t won in four matches, their season ending in major disappointment.

The Old Trafford club still view themselves as one that belongs in Europe’s elite competition.

So for them to miss out, just before a summer where major investment is required, is tough to take.

United's season could begin in July 

And there’s a chance that their 2019-20 campaign will begin as early as July.

If Man United finish in sixth place and Watford win the FA Cup, they will compete in a Europa League qualifier on July 25.

That’s because Watford would take the second automatic group stage place from the sixth-placed team if they defeat Manchester City at Wembley on May 18.

So Man United will be supporting their neighbours in the final.

Manchester United v Manchester City - Premier League

The Red Devils are already set for a hectic pre-season, with trips to Australia, China, Singapore and Wales already planned.

They are due to play Perth Glory and Leeds United in Australia on July 13 and 17 respectively.

And fixtures against Inter Milan on July 20 and against Tottenham on July 25 - the date of the Europa League qualifier - have also been arranged.

A friendly against AC Milan in Cardiff on August 3 has also been planned.

Huddersfield Town v Manchester United - Premier League

Man United benefitted from playing in the Europa League in 2016-17 - they won the competition under Jose Mourinho, securing a spot in the Champions League for the following campaign.

But they entered the competition at the group stage that year, their first game coming in September.

Solskjaer will breathe a sigh of relief if he’s able to avoid a late July fixture this year.

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