Jose Mourinho will be without the suspended Ander Herrera while Luke Shaw is confirmed to be absent from the traveling squad for the Europa League tie.
Manchester United travel to France to face AS Saint-Etienne in the second leg of the Europa League First Knockout Phase, with a seemingly unassailable 3-0 lead from the home leg. The Red Devils, though, will be without midfield enforcer Ander Herrera, who is suspended for the tie.
But, despite the absence of Herrera, there is an abundance of options available at Mourinho’s dispoal for the match, with Michael Carrick and Bastian Schweinsteiger both in the traveling squad. The focus, though, was on the defence as Luke Shaw was left out once again from the matchday squad. Mourinho explained the Shaw situation.
“ He stayed behind in Manchester because I’m playing with Daley Blind, with Marcos Rojo, with Matteo Darmian, and all of them are playing the way I like a full-back to play. Luke has to wait for his chance and work better and better, knowing I give nothing for free.”
“ When I give something to the players, it’s expensive for them – it’s not cheap. They have to work hard every day, they have to play well, so he has to wait. And, at this moment, he’s behind the others.”
“ Potentially, he has many things that I like but one thing is potentially, another thing is on the pitch to express all the qualities that I like a player to express. And he has to keep working, like Mkhitaryan did for a long time.”
Another player that has not made the traveling squad is Wayne Rooney, who Mourinho confirmed, was not 100% fit to travel for the mid-week fixture. But, the Portuguese said that the club icon’s fitness will be assessed over the weekend to evaluate his chances of making it into the squad for the EFL Cup final.
Timothy Fosu-Mensah has made it to the traveling squad and Manchester United fans would hope the Dutchman can get some important minutes under his belt and continue impressing the manager, who has appreciated the versatile defender’s talent and potential earlier.
The tie seems more like a dead rubber but AS Saint-Etienne are likely to field a strong eleven in the hopes of mounting a seemingly impossible feat. Mourinho’s traveling squad, though, shows that he isn’t taking the tie lightly and perhaps, rightly so.