Manchester United defender Eric Bailly has vowed to comeback stronger next season after suffering a medial knee ligament injury during the recent1-1 Premier League draw against Chelsea. The Ivorian was a surprise starter against the Blues at the weekend but his game ended on a sad note after he was taken off injured during the final quarter of the match.
United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has since confirmed that the versatile defender has suffered a knee injury which requires an operation and Bailly has now welcomed the fans support with an Instagram message which read: “I would like to thank everyone for the messages of love and support I have received. Some injuries are unavoidable. It’s true that this season hasn’t smiled down upon me very much, but I will return soon and with more strength next season, God willing.”
Marcos Rojo claims that he is ready to repay the faith shown by manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in the absence of Luke Shaw. The 29-year-old has had fitness issues throughout the campaign and he has been able to start in just three league matches so far. The record in the other competitions has also not been great with the Argentine starting just one game in the Champions League. However, the 29-year-old was able to feature for United in the recent game against West Ham. Even though he did not last the whole match, the Argentine did complete 75 minutes of action.
His availability is a major positive for Solskjaer, who will be without Luke Shaw due to suspension. Rojo’s Manchester United future is a major doubt with the player reportedly on the verge of leaving the club at the end of the season. However, Rojo has now claimed thatSolskjaer has promised him a place in the squad once he returns to fitness. Signed by Louis van Gaal in the summer of 2014 from Sporting CP, Rojo has had to work under three different managers at United. His best season with the club was during the 2016-17 campaign when he made 41 appearances, but he has been unable to even hit 30 appearances in the other three full campaigns.
Jesper Blomqvist remains as one of the high-profile Swedish players to have represented Manchester United in the past. The former winger, who played for United between 1998 and 2001, has claimed that defender Victor Lindelof is on his way to becoming one of the key players for the Red Devils. The 24-year-old was signed after a long pursuit by then-manager Jose Mourinho in the summer of 2017. He was about to join United even as early as a year ago. The total fee for the defender was around € 35 million in addition to a bonus of around € 10 million depending on performances.
Even though Lindelof has not been able to produce a consistent set of performances throughout his time at United, the defender has been slowly growing in confidence. He has now been able to establish himself more often in the first-team in his second full season with the club. After making 29 appearances in his first season with United, Lindelof has featured in 35 games so far. Even after a managerial change that saw the arrival of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, the 24-year-old has kept himself in the first-team reckoning. His versatility is a major factor that has helped him grow, andBlomqvist claims that Lindelof can only get better in the coming years underSolskjaer.
Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has said that his former club have no reason to deny Ole Gunnar Solskjaer with the permanent head coach role. The Norwegian took charge of United on an interim basis after Jose Mourinho’s sacking in December and he has since transformed the club’s league fortunes with an unbeaten run.
Speaking to Goal.com, Ferdinand said that the club’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has no reason to deny the Norwegian with the permanent managerial position, given the club’s exceptional progress over the past few months, he said: “Ole gets a blank canvas now to go into the club, do what he wants to do and move it forward. It doesn’t matter how many players because the turnover has been so great over the last seven or eight years.
Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata has heaped praise on the performance of Paul Pogba following the club’s 2-0 triumph over Chelsea in the FA Cup fifth round. The France international has been one of the club’s in-form players since the appointment of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and he continued to provide another commanding performance with a goal and an assist against the Blues.
Speaking after the game, Mata was full of admiration for his teammate, who made the key difference during the first period. He added to praise the midfielder’s all-round ability on the playing field and hailed him as one of the best midfielders in the world, he said: “Yes, he assisted the cross for the first goal, scored the second one. Even in the second half, 80, 85 minutes he was still defending, going forwards. He’s very, very complete. He’s got physique, he’s got quality, he’s got a pass, he can go box to box. He’s one of the best. Today he showed why.”
Former Liverpool ace Danny Murphy predicts that Romelu Lukaku could make way from Manchester United when the season comes to a close. The Belgium international was the undisputed choice upfront during his maiden campaign with the club last term and he contributed 27 goals across all competitions.
However, he has not been able to replicate the form this season with just nine goals and things have become recently become tough for him with the inability to command a starting role. Speaking on TalkSPORT, Murphy has said that Lukaku may not fancy being the club’s number two behind Marcus Rashford in the long-term and this could eventually tempt him to pursue a fresh challenge during the summer.
Former Manchester United star Paul Parker has praised the impact of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer since taking interim charge of the Red Devils but does not think he would be the right choice for the permanent job. Speaking to Talk SPORT, Parker said that Solskjaer would be perfect for the short-term fix but looking forward, United must recruit an experienced head coach capable of luring some of their preferred targets next summer.
He said: “Ole is a lovely fella. He’s come in and he’s brought his smile into the place and everybody’s feeling happy. You’ll get the best out of anybody when they’re happy. But long-term, I don’t think so. As good as it can be this season, you have to look at the long-term. Manchester United need that little bit more, someone who is really going to attract the top players. With his lack of experience, players are not going to want to go there, and agents are not going to watch to take their players there.”
Former Manchester United defender David May believes the Red Devils attackers need more time to get used to Diogo Dalot’s deliveries from the right side of the backline. The Portuguese footballer made his maiden league start for the Red Devils earlier this month and he has since impressed against Fulham, where he was a regular threat with crosses into the box.
Speaking to MUTV, May highlighted that the sight of Dalot is refreshing for the United team, who have been adjusting with makeshift right-backs in the form of Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia in recent seasons. He added that the United attack front may need additional time to get the knowledge over the Portuguese’s style of play.
Manchester United will reportedly refuse Jose Mourinho with the funds to bolster the squad in the New Year. The Red Devils have endured a frustrating start to the Premier League season with just 20 points from their opening 12 matches and this had recently spread the speculation that they could go on a winter spending spree.
However, according to The Independent, that may not be the case when the transfer window reopens with the hierarchy still concerned over the lack of sufficient impact from Jose Mourinho’s signings. In particular, there are said to be concerns regarding the failure of both Eric Bailly and Victor Lindelof to sufficiently impress at the heart of the defence while the same goes for midfielder Fred, who was recruited from Shakhtar Donetsk last summer after a huge outlay of nearly £52m.
Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has admitted that he is not confident of David de Gea extending his contract with the club. The Spain international has been with the Red Devils for the past seven-and-a-half seasons and during his period, he has transformed into one of the world’smost sought after goalkeepers.
As a result, there has been regular speculation regarding his future at Old Trafford and speaking to Sky Sports News, Mourinho has acknowledged that the club are still far off from extending his current deal, he said: “I am not confident. I cannot find the word in English, but let’s see what happens. Only the club, David and his people can answer that. My comment is only that everyone knows how good he is, how important he is for Manchester United and, if the club want to be better than it is and not worse, obviously it would be very important to keep David.”