Team News: Man Utd Handed Injury Boost + Mourinho Confirms Trio Will Start vs Basel
Manchester United have been handed an injury boost ahead of their clash with Basel while Jose Mourinho has also confirmed three players who’ll start.
Manchester United will return to the Champions League group stages when they take on Basel at Old Trafford on Tuesday night.
The Red Devils have been handed a boost ahead of the game after Marouane Fellaini returned to training today having recovered from a minor calf injury.
Fellaini was forced to miss the 2-2 draw at Stoke City on Saturday night after aggravating a calf problem that he initially picked up while away with the Belgian national team.
Jose Mourinho had confirmed at his pre-match press conference earlier today that the midfielder missed training on Sunday and was a doubt for the visit of Basel tomorrow night.
Mourinho was keen for the 29-year-old to be available for selection as he feels the Belgian is a ‘very important player’ and his squad is much weaker without him.
Mourinho had told ManUtd.com earlier today:
“Fellaini didn’t train yesterday so let’s see if he can today. He’s a very important player for me, much more important than you can imagine. I feel weaker without Fellaini in my squad, it doesn’t matter if it’s on the pitch or if it’s on the bench. So if his condition improves then he will be selected, because I need him but at the moment. But I cannot say yet.”
“Yes, he had a problem with his national team and then he played a match against Greece, and after the match he felt the problem.”
However, it looks like United have been handed a boost as Fellaini was part of the squad that were put through their paces at Carrington this afternoon so he could be in contention to feature tomorrow.
In other team news, Mourinho also confirmed that David De Gea will start against Basel as the United boss will resist the temptation to give Sergio Romero a run-out in the Champions League.
But Chris Smalling and Victor Lindelof will be given recalls in defence with Mourinho reiterating that the centre-backs will come in for the suspended Eric Bailly and Phil Jones tomorrow night.
Mourinho continued to ManUtd.com:
“I do what I think is the best for the team, I don’t like that clear separation of ‘I play in this competition and you play in this competition’. And I think in this moment, David is playing very well and is very confident. I will go with David tomorrow again.”
“They are all at the same level so it is no problem at all. Even if Jones and Bailly were not suspended, I would probably play Smalling and Lindelof. For Lindelof, I think the competition is easier to adapt to because he is used to playing in the Champions League.
“Portuguese football is more comparable to the Champions League than the Premier League. I think with him, it will be a choice for me to play him in this match. Smalling is working well so why not use his experience. I trust them. I am not worried at all that Bailly and Jones are out.”
After two years out of the competition, United will return to the Champions League on Tuesday night so Mourinho will be desperate to get off to a positive start with a win against Basel.
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