Key Playmaker Doubtful – Manchester United Injury News Ahead Of Europa League Game Against Rostov

Manchester United travel to Russia to face Rostov in their Europa League round of 16 1st leg clash on Thursday. This is the first time Manchester United are playing Rostov and the stakes are going to be high. They cannot afford to underestimate Rostov who beat Anderlecht and Ajax in the Champions League qualifiers to be drawn alongside Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid in the group stage of the competition.

However, they did well to finish 3rd in the group ahead of PSV and reach Europa League. They also beat Bayern Munich at home, 3-2. So there is every chance of Man Utd losing on the very same ground if they take the foot off the gas.

The Russian outfit are unbeaten at home this season domestically and have lost only one of their previous 7 European home games.

Hence, Mourinho’s men need to be careful and do the preparations right if they are to make sure they don’t slip.

The early team news for Manchester United is that Eric Bailly is unavailable after he picked up a red card in United’s previous European game against St-Etienne. The Ivorian was booked twice in the space of three minutes for challenges on Romain Hamouma. It was totally unnecessary given the context of the game.

Algerian winger Henrikh Mkhitaryan is a doubt as well after he missed out on United’s EFL cup win over Southampton and also their following league game against AFC Bournemouth. however, he has been named in the squad. Paul Pogba is all set to make his 50th European appearance and it hopefully will be a night to remember for the World’s most expensive player. He has so far made a combined 49 appearances for Juventus and Manchester United and the game against Rostov will be his 50th one.

Veteran midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger missed out against AFC Bournemouth due to a minor injury and has not been named in the United squad that is set to travel to Russia.

Meanwhile, Rostov have a near full-strength squad, though goalkeeper Soslan Dzhanaev is set to miss out through injury.

United drew 1-1 against Bournemouth in a frustrating weekend. The Reds have never played FC Rostov before, but they have faced four other Russian sides since 1992. The most recent encounter being the game against CSKA Moscow in the Champions League group stage last season. United, came out on top at Old Trafford, winning 1-0, after being held to a 1-1 draw in Moscow. Manchester United are also unbeaten in four games away to Russian sides – albeit a goalless draw against Torpedo Moscow in 1992 which preceded a penalty shoot-out defeat in the UEFA Cup first round. The club have only lost once to a Russian side over 90 minutes, going down 2-1 to Zenit St Petersburg in the 2008 Super Cup in Monaco.

The stats and history suggest that this game is not going to be one-way traffic. With Manchester United being a strong team on paper with all but two of their players available, and Rostov entering the game with only one player unavailable, the game is sure to entertain everyone and it will be interesting to see who comes out on top.

Here’s the Manchester United squad to face Rostov:

De Gea, Romero, O’Hara; Valencia, Jones, Rojo, Smalling, Blind, Darmian, Young; Carrick, Herrera, Fellaini, Pogba, Mata, Lingard, Mkhitaryan; Martial, Rashford, Ibrahimovic.

Will Rostov push Manchester United all the way?