Sunday, 17 December, 2017

Manchester United and England legend could miss out against Crystal Palace

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Clarence Schmidt | 22 May, 2017, 03:28

If that is the case, Sunday could be his last opportunity to play at Old Trafford in a United shirt, but Mourinho has hinted that he will not be involved against Palace in what is expected to be a largely inexperienced team, with the Red Devils preparing for the Europa League final against Ajax on Wednesday.

The 21-year-old England youth global took control of a brilliantly delivered long ball from Paul Pogba and worked some individual magic inside the box to create space for a well-placed right-footed shot that Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey watched sail into the far corner.

On an afternoon that some suggested could be his final competitive United appearance at Old Trafford, the 31-year-old received a standing ovation as he was replaced by 16-year-old Angel Gomes - the first Premier League player to have been born in the 21st century.

"They're nice words and now I need to prove that he's right!" They give you confidence and helped me a lot in the game.

"It's the only positive thing".

The Crystal Palace boss lasted just 67 days and one match in the job before leaving the role by mutual consent following a covert national newspaper sting.

"I know we're a big name but in size - commercial, financial size - we're a small club that can also achieve success".

"I think they really need my support, Nicky Butt's and supporters to understand hard job they have".

"Obviously there is a big difference of quality, strength, experience between them and good players, experienced players like Crystal Palace have".

"I think if a team goes to the Champions League and doesn't qualify they should go home".

Jose Mourinho is adamant that Manchester United's academy players aren't ready to face Crystal Palace on Sunday, but says he has been left with no other choice. "Those new players [we signed] in January, the pick-up of those players [has been vital.] The performances have been very good". Ibrahimovic ruptured ligament in his knee after landing awkwardly in the Europa League quarter-final against Anderlecht.

"The chairman (Steve Parish) has pointed that out to me like every chairman I've worked for, which is always an important part of each year's growth".

"It means the world for myself and Ajax", Van der Sar said ahead of the Europa League final.

"He scored a hat-trick last Monday, he had two similar goals in that, and you could see his confidence from that game", said young team mate Demitri Mitchell. Anybody with knocks or problems, I will not play.

"He told me to get up and get back out there. Everybody wants to go and play at Old Trafford and come off with a result, as hard as it might be".

However most journalists were not in attendance as they were watching the players on the pitch and the room was almost empty.

Backgound: Returned from a loan spell in Portugal with Belenenses to make his senior United debut in January, coming on as a late substitute in the FA Cup win against Wigan.

Wednesday's match is crucial for Manchester United with victory not only delivering the Europa League trophy but also a place in next season's Champions League.

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