Mourinho Confirms Duo Will Start But Two Other Key Men Ruled Out

Jose Mourinho and his side arrived at the Lowry hotel on the eve of their Champions League tie

Only a very heavy loss at the hands of CSKA, combined with a Basel win over Benfica, would see United not qualify for the knockout rounds of the Champions League, but Mourinho is taking the game as seriously as ever.

With the Frenchman unavailable for domestic duty until at least the Carabao Cup quarter-final meeting with Championship promotion hopefuls Bristol City on 20 December, Mourinho plans to involve him tomorrow as his side look to seal their place in the last 16 of European football's elite club competition.

United had until 9pm (Singapore time) yesterday to decide whether to lodge an appeal.

"Of course, he's a bit exhausted because it was a huge match at the weekend and just two days to recover for CSKA".

United need only avoid a heavy defeat against the Russians to ensure they top Group A and book their place in the draw for the last-16 on December 11.

"More importantly, the others deserve an opportunity to play".

Paul Pogba will play against CSKA Moscow but will miss the next three Premier League games
Paul Pogba will play against CSKA Moscow but will miss the next three Premier League games

United are still without defender Eric Bailly and midfielder Marouane Fellaini, who both have knocks, while centre-back Phil Jones (calf) is also out.

Midfielder Nemanja Matic will definitely play no part due to injury, while Zlatan Ibrahimovic is not ready to face CSKA but could play a part against City.

But Jose Mourinho said the 22-year-old has impressed with his attitude in training and deserves a chance. "He needs very hard work on the muscular area that supports the knee that had a problem. And when the period for that hard work comes, also the fatigue comes", the boss of the veteran Swede. He can not play for these days.

"He was on this cycle of work, divided between the gym and the pitch". I can learn a lot from him and also the other coaches, so we talk sometimes and it's been good.

Despite his intention to rest players, Mourinho insisted that United are not thinking about their neighbours just yet.

"I can only speak for myself, but I think all the guys are just focused on this game and then we'll focus on Sunday". It's just about tomorrow.

More news: Everton to name ex-England manager, Sam Allardyce as boss

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