Manchester United have been handed a severe blow, as key midfielder Nemanja Matic looks doubtful to feature against rivals Arsenal on the weekend.
Manager Jose Mourinho confirmed after the tie that Matic had suffered an injury in the clash versus Watford, after he was replaced by Ander Herrera near the hour-mark at Vicarage Road.
Matic waved towards the United dug-out, and soon asked to be taken off as he sat on the ground. Mourinho did not take any chance, and replaced him immediately with the Spaniard.
The Portuguese revealed the details of the midfielder’s struggle, by stating: “For Matic to tell me he wants to be replaced, he does not do that if it is nothing important. It is muscular.”
It was again evident against Watford, as his presence was a cover for the defenders, and helped Paul Pogba to wander forward and create an impact.
Till the time Matic was on the ground, United did not concede, and only after he was taken off did the club give away two goals, before scoring again to take a 4-2 win.
Matic has featured in every game for the Red Devils in the Premier League this season, and prior to the Watford tie, he had even played every single minute of it.
United will hope they can get the Serbian ready before the tie against Arsenal, as they are already missing Marouane Fellaini, as Jose confirmed prior to the game that the Belgian is out with a new injury, and will not be available against the Gunners.
That leaves Pogba, Herrera and Scott McTominay for now as midfield options. Jose has Michael Carrick too, as the veteran is back training and looks ready to feature very soon.
Written by Rajdeep Saha
Sports journalist with stints across print, digital and television. Contribution to each medium has been thrilling. Experienced in writing for this passionate game called football. Journalist by choice and passion.