Manchester United face Burton in the newly named Carabao Cup’s third round fixture on Wednesday. The Red Devils are the defending champions of the domestic cup, which has always been viewed by top-flight clubs as a welcome opportunity for squad rotation. A similar tactic might be in the mind of Jose Mourinho, and the beneficiary might be a player that is aching for action.
Luke Shaw has struggled with injuries during his time at Old Trafford. The latest of these was an ankle ligament injury that he suffered late last season. However, just last week, Mourinho announced that the 22-year-old was fully fit. Despite that, the left-back was omitted from the squad that won 4-0 against Everton.
The player was left out from the U23’s game as well, spurring speculation that he could feature with the senior squad on Wednesday. All of his appearances so far this season have come with the youth squad.
When purchased from Southampton back in 2014 for £30 million, he was the then most expensive teenage footballer.
He was privy to regular starts for the English giants before fateful injuries cut his seasons short, with him attaining just 47 appearances over the three seasons. The top rated player has also been linked with moves away from the club, but chose to stay and fight for his position.
It will be interesting to see which names Mourinho chooses to rest, and which players are given starts against the Championship club. While United will look to give a decent shot at retaining their title, the Portuguese manager is known to prioritize some ties over others. With the Reds eager to regain their Premier League glory, how far will they progress in the Cup?
Written by Naveen Kelvin
A writer trying to craft the poetry within football. Purpose in life is to Make Good Art.