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Herrera omission for Champions League tie underlines United strength in depth

Herrera omission for Champions League tie underlines United strength in depth”

"I think for these teams that you are speaking of and for the Real Madrids, Barcelonas and Bayerns, the Champions League starts in February", Mourinho told reporters at Old Trafford.

Pogba will wear the armband in the absence of club captain Michael Carrick, who is on the bench, while Lindelof will play his first match for the club - aside from the European Super Cup - following his £31 million move from Benfica.

Fellaini was jeered by some United supporters last season after conceding a late penalty that enabled Everton to rescue a 1-1 draw in a Premier League game at Goodison Park in December.

"(Smalling and Lindelof) train really hard", Mourinho said. "They could do it". Now I'm going to leave the match for a while and then watch the replay to see if there's anything that I could have done better.

Paul Pogba's hamstring injury was the only negative on a straightforward evening for Mourinho, whose strength in depth was laid bare by the fact Herrera did not even make the bench.

Mourinho claimed after the game he had not spoken to the player or the medical stuff and did not know how bad the injury would be - but that he thought it may be some time before Pogba could play again - and would call on his squad to help get through said games. We are not going to say that Pogba is "one more player" on the squad, because he isn't.

Midfielder Marouane Fellaini has been struggling lately with a calf problem, and Mourinho appeared to express irritation with Belgium manager Roberto Martinez for fielding him in the recent World Cup qualifying win over Greece despite the injury. He added: "When the players go to the national team, they belong to the national team".

"So we need this and in the Premier League and the Champions League I have to choose the players in relation to the quality". And in February, when us English teams are trying to survive after the winter period, they are fresh and ready after these warm-ups.



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