Brussels (AFP) – Wayne Rooney will not feature for Manchester United in Thursday’s Europa League tie away to Anderlecht despite training on Wednesday, manager Jose Mourinho said.
The England striker missed United’s last two Premier League matches, against Everton and Sunderland, with an ankle injury but was involved in the session at the English giants’ Carrington training ground before United travelled to Belgium.
But Mourinho told reporters in Brussels Rooney isn’t ready yet.
“He’s not happy with his condition, we’re trying to work with him but he’s not confident, he’s not happy,” said Mourinho at Anderlecht’s Constant Vanden Stock stadium.
“He has a bad feeling with his ankle and he’s not ready yet. Let’s see for the weekend or for next week.
“We don’t have many players, we need everyone in the minimum condition to play to try to be available.”
David De Gea, Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young also took part in the training session, with Juan Mata, Chris Smalling and Phil Jones the only first-team regulars missing.
Spanish goalkeeper De Gea missed Sunday’s 3-0 win over Sunderland with a hip problem.
Mourinho may opt to keep him out of action for the quarter-final first leg and bring him back for Sunday’s league fixture against leaders Chelsea instead.
That would mean Sergio Romero continuing between the posts against Anderlecht.
Mourinho refused to be drawn on De Gea’s future amid English tabloid speculation linking the Spain international with a summer move to Real Madrid, in a swap deal involving Germany midfielder Toni Kroos.
“I’m not interested in the speculation, if the player is he shouldn’t (be) because we’re playing for very important things and every match for us is crucial,” said Mourinho.
“Every match is a match that demands from every one of us top focus — I don’t see any problem related to this.
“The end of the season is the time when players can be thinking about what is going to happen in their careers.”
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