Often in the past, Manchester United have seen their run of good games swiftly turn sour owing to dreadful injuries to their star players. Till mid-September, their only major worry was the long-term absence of star man Paul Pogba.
However, in the month since, the names of Phil Jones, Marouane Fellaini, and Michael Carrick have quickly added to the worrying list. But, prior to their encounter with Liverpool in the Premier League, they might witness the fitness of one of them.
Phil Jones was sent back from England’s international squad earlier this week, after being ruled out due to an ankle problem. The issue in question has been plaguing the 25-year-old for quite a while now, with Jose Mourinho revealing that the player has been carrying the problem since September itself.
This issue made Jones miss out from their UEFA Champions League trip to Russia, where United faced CSKA Moscow and emerged victorious. Despite that, the defender featured for the entire 90 minutes against Crystal Palace in the Red Devils’ previous encounter in the Premier League. The former finished 4-1, and the latter scoreline too, ensured a resounding 4-0 victory for United.
Despite that, England manager Gareth Southgate opted against picking the player, and kept him out from the country’s squad for the international break. However, there might a glimmer of hope for the centre-back, with sources (via ESPN) reporting that the player might be fit enough for Saturday’s game against Liverpool.
Further, the recovery is subject to what the Mancunian side’s medical staff determines it to be. In the absence of Jones, Mourinho can try and experiment with three men at the back, as he has attempted previously this season.
However, supporters will be hoping it doesn’t come to that, owing to Jones’ positive form so far, and they will also be earnestly praying that the injury isn’t something major, and that the Englishman will be match fit sooner rather than later.
Written by Naveen Kelvin
A writer trying to craft the poetry within football. Purpose in life is to Make Good Art.