Jose Mourinho gives fitness update on Ashley Young, Luke Shaw and Marcos Rojo

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has given an injury update on injured trio Ashley Young, Luke Shaw, and Marcos Rojo ahead of the Premier League clash with Leicester City at Old Trafford on Saturday evening. The Portuguese manager has confirmed that Young is closer than Shaw in terms of returning to action for the first team despite both coming through 60 minutes of action for the U23’s in the 1-1 draw with Swansea City on Monday evening. Both stepped up their comebacks this season after spending the summer putting in some hard work on the road to recovery. Shaw will again be involved in the U23’s for the second time this week as United lock horns with Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League 2 on Friday evening.

The fact that Young and Shaw are closer to being a part of the first team again is a big boost for Mourinho and United, especially with the UEFA Champions League and the Carabao Cup coming into contention next month with United playing seven matches in September, the busiest month of the new season so far. Young and Shaw were seen training with the first team on Tuesday casting speculation about the pair’s return but with United not confirming anything until Mourinho’s press conference on Friday afternoon, in which he confirmed to the official Manchester United website that Young was much closer to being back in action than Shaw, saying:

“[Ashley] Young will be earlier than Luke [Shaw]. There are seven matches to play in September in three different competitions, sometimes just two days between matches, so we need our squad. We need everyone.”

Marcos Rojo has also been out of action with a knee injury sustained against Anderlecht in the UEFA Europa League, incidentally the same night as Zlatan Ibrahimovic suffered a severe knee injury too. The Argentinian has been working hard on his return to action, also seen training with the first team on Tuesday but well behind the likes of Young and Shaw who had been training for much of the summer in a bid to be fit and ready as early as they could in the new season with United expected to mount a serious title challenge in the Premier League. Mourinho commented on the fitness of Rojo, saying:

“Again, there is no rush. When I see him run, I like it. It doesn’t look like somebody with an injury. There is no limping, there are no details of injury but that is just body language, that is just straight running. Football is different, we have to respect the timings and the timings are bringing Marcos [Rojo] to the team around December, not before.”

Rojo will be out for much of the first half of the season, which was expected in the weeks following his knee injury. It was feared that the player could be out of action for the majority of the season, which turned into the majority of the first half of the season. Mourinho himself has stated that the Argentinian will be back in December, not before but also stated that his recovery was going well, which is a great sign. United will need to be careful in bringing him back to action as if he got involved too early and suffered a recurrence of the same injury, his season would be over before he had even started.

Mourinho had previously confirmed that Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who United re-signed on Thursday would play no part in the group stages of the UEFA Champions League, seemingly being back in action early in 2018, which will be something to savour. United have some great experience in the sidelines in Young, Shaw, Rojo, and Ibrahimovic at this time and when all four are back in action, United will be so much stronger across all areas of the pitch. United have started the season strongly already, so that added strength will be something to feast your eyes upon. United may just awaken this season showing the rest of the Premier League and maybe Europe that the best is ready to get back into the swing of things.

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