Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has hinted that fullback Luke Shaw could be close to some rare action as he “deserves a chance”.
Shaw has played just 47 minutes in Mourinho’s team this season, but the Portuguese boss has confirmed the 22-year-old will be part of United’s matchday squad to take on CSKA Moscow in the Champions League.
“I have to think [about who plays]. I am going to make a few – but not too many – changes,” he told a press conference.
“We didn’t qualify yet, we didn’t finish first in the group yet. The other clubs also involved in qualifying, so I need to keep certain balance in the team.
“But when you speak about Luke Shaw, he is working to have an opportunity, and sooner or later an opportunity will arrive, because he deserves a chance.
“Selected tomorrow – for sure. But starting or on the bench? I cannot answer.”
One player who will not be short of opportunities is Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who was surprisngly ommited from the matchday squad to take on Arsenal on the weekend.
But Mourinho says there is no need for concern.
“Zlatan is not injured,” Mourinho said. “He sometimes needs some very hard work on the muscular area which supports knee which had problems.
“When a period of hard work comes, also the fatigue comes. To work really hard for a certain period of time, he cannot play in these days, so we decided to do that after Watford.
“He’s on that cycle of work now, divided between gym and pitch. He’ll be out again tomorrow [Tuesday], but back to normal work after CSKA.
“All other players who were out are still out. But I could make a surprise and one who isn’t available may play.”