Wayne Rooney was one of the three Manchester United players who was absent from the team’s training session ahead of Thursday night’s Europa League fixture at home against St Etienne.
The French side will visit Old Trafford for the first leg of their last-32 tie, with the second leg scheduled on next Wednesday evening at the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard.
The Mirror claim Rooney’s absence from Wednesday’s session grabbed the main attention at the Aon Training Complex, with fellow Englishmen Michael Carrick and Phil Jones also missed the training. However, Marcos Rojo did join his teammates after missing the Red Devils’ 2-0 home victory against Watford at the weekend.
Jones has been sidelined since leaving the pitch during the Premier League clash with Hull with a foot problem, but Rooney and Carrick were on the bench against Watford.
All three players’ availability for Thursday’s game is still unknown but they perhaps all have missed out on a place in Jose Mourinho’s starting eleven anyway.
Meanwhile, Manchester United‘s encounter with the 10-time French champions will put Paul Pogba up against his elder brother Florentine, who is a key figure in Les Verts’ defence.
Mourinho’s boys, who suffered defeat at Feyenoord and Fenerbahce in the tournament earlier this season, will have an extremely difficult task in their quest to progress in the competition.
St Etienne went unbeaten in Europa League Group C, topping their group. They are also only one point and one place adrift of fourth-placed Lyon in Ligue 1 and come with the second best defensive record in the French top-flight, behind champions PSG.
The St Etienne players and officials touched down Manchester on Wednesday morning to prepare for Thursday’s Old Trafford game.