James Wilson Manchester United
James Wilson is hoping for more first team opportunities this seasonGetty Images

Manchester United striker James Wilson has hailed the pre-season tour of America as "an unbelievable experience" after arriving back on home soil.

The 19-year-old has dramatically risen up the pecking order at Old Trafford this summer, with Robin van Persie and Radamel Falcao being shown the exit. Javier Hernandez is back following his loan at Real Madrid but no other forwards have been drafted in by United boss Louis van Gaal.

That has given Wilson a chance to stake his claim as the understudy to Wayne Rooney for the Red Devils and he has looked to send the Dutchman a message with his ability at every available opportunity this summer. "The tour has been an unbelievable experience for me. I expressed myself to the manager. He knows what I'm capable of and I just needed to show that. I've gone out there and done what I could," Wilson told MUTV.

"I just need to keep training hard. You hear everyone say it. If you want it really bad, you've got to train for it. You've just got to train hard, get fit and stay injury free really. For me, that's probably one of the big things because I've had little injuries here and there. I'd say staying fit is the big one for me."

Wilson made his first Manchester United appearance at the end of the 2013-14 campaign, scoring two goals on his debut for temporary manager Ryan Giggs at Old Trafford. He subsequently made 17 appearances in all competitions last season, scoring twice more.

After an impressive showing in the States, where Wilson featured against San Jose Earthquakes and Barcelona, the England youth international will now be hoping to continue his development at the club's Aon Training Complex and earn more senior chances under the watchful eye of Van Gaal.

"The manager just told me to work hard and be a team player and I tried to show him what I had and to do the best job I could out there," said Wilson after victory over Barcelona at the end of July. "It was a great experience, to play against such a good team like Barcelona at such a great stadium."

Manchester United begin their Premier League campaign on Saturday 8 August with the visit of Tottenham Hotspur to Old Trafford, before travelling to the Midlands to face Aston Villa on 14 August. The club will also learn their Champions League fate on Friday 7 August when Uefa host the draw for the final play-off round in Nyon.