Manchester United are heading into this weekend’s crucial derby with a number of absentees.
We have been hit hard with injuries this season, particularly in defence and midfield, and none more so than this weekend’s match against Premier League leaders Manchester City at Old Trafford.
The first guarantee is that Paul Pogba will not face Pep Guardiola’s side due to suspension having been sent off in our 3-1 win at Arsenal this past weekend.
Joining the French star on the absent list in centre midfield is Michael Carrick. And although Jose Mourinho has said that Nemanja Matic is injured, he also confirmed he will play on Saturday.
Speaking after our 2-1 win over CSKA Moscow on Tuesday night, Mourinho confirmed the Serbian’s availability:
“(Marouane) Fellaini a chance, Zlatan (Ibrahimovic) a big chance and (Nemanja) Matic is injured but will play for sure.
As the boss said above, Marouane Fellaini only has a chance of playing, having struggled with injuries over the past two months. Zlatan Ibrahimovic has missed the last two games with muscle fatigue but it sounds like the striker is back in contention to face the Citizens.
However, in the same interview, the boss announced the bad news that Eric Bailly has been ruled out indefinitely for Sunday’s game. The centre-back has not featured since being away on international duty with the Ivory Coast last month.
“The truth is Eric Bailly, no chance for the weekend. Phil Jones a chance.”
Phil Jones also suffered an injury on international duty with England last month and has not played since. In his absence, Victor Lindelof and Chris Smalling have been forming a strong partnership in central defence. These two are expected to face City, whilst Marcos Rojo could partner them in a back three having been rested versus CSKA Moscow midweek.