Following the departure of Louis van Gaal at the end of the previous season, the club signed former Porto, Chelsea, Internazionale and Real Madrid manager José Mourinho on a three-year contract, with the option of a further year.
United preceded their 2016–17 campaign with a friendly against Wigan, a tour of China, a friendly in Sweden facing Turkish club Galatasaray in the 2016 SuperGame, and Wayne Rooney's testimonial match between Manchester United and Everton at Old Trafford. The season concluded with Michael Carrick's testimonial on 4 June between United players of the 2008 European Double-winning side (plus Dimitar Berbatov, who joined the club during the following transfer window, and Michael's brother, Graeme Carrick) and an all-star team picked by Carrick, both teams respectively managed by Sir Alex Ferguson and Harry Redknapp, Carrick's first manager as a professional footballer.
As a result of winning the 2015–16 FA Cup, Manchester United faced Leicester City, who won the 2015–16 Premier League, in their 30th FA Community Shield appearance. Manchester United won the match to claim their 21st Community Shield (including four shared titles).
The Premier League season kicked off on 13 August and concluded on 21 May.