Manchester United will be without the services of Wayne Rooney and Luke Shaw for their clash against Middlesbrough on New Year’s eve.

After winning four games on the spin for the first time this season in the Premier League, Jose Mourinho will be hoping that his Manchester United team continue their run going into the cramped set of fixtures.

The Red Devils take on Middlesbrough in the final fixture of the year, but will be without the services of club captain Wayne Rooney. The 31-year-old picked up an injury in training on Christmas day, and is deemed unfit to take part in the game against the Teessiders.

Rooney has missed a number of games through injury as well as omission from the starting eleven and is set to sit out yet another game in what has been a tough season for him. He has made only eight starts in United’s 18 matches this season and has found the back of the net on one occasion.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 29: Wayne Rooney of Manchester United reacts during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Burnley at Old Trafford on October 29, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Mark Robinson/Getty Images)

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 29: Wayne Rooney of Manchester United reacts during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Burnley at Old Trafford on October 29, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo Courtesy: Mark Robinson/Getty Images)

When asked in the pre-match press conference on Friday if there was a definitive time when the forward would return, Mourinho replied (via the club’s official website): “No, but he’s not ready [for the Middlesbrough match].”

Defender Luke Shaw has been out of action for several weeks through a groin injury and will continue to be an absentee from the matchday squad. The Englishman is back in training but is not fit enough for a comeback. Matteo Darmian or Daley Blind are likely to slot in at left-back.

Summer signing Eric Bailly has slotted straight into Mourinho’s plans this season, but he has been out of action for the last couple of months due to a thigh injury. However, the Ivorian now looks to have recuperated, and is likely to be named among the substitutes.

Michael Carrick and Ander Herrera have formed an exceptional understanding in midfield, and are likely to start as a pivot with Paul Pogba ahead of him. Henrikh Mkhitaryan is expected to start after scoring an exceptional goal on Boxing Day.

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