Just as Manchester United are easing into the busy upcoming holiday schedule, the club could be without one of its game-changing players.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of Manchester United’s match on Saturday against Southampton, manager Jose Mourinho said Friday he feared Alexis Sanchez could be out for the long term. In Mourinho’s words, Sanchez suffered an “aggressive muscular injury” in Thursday’s training session, and while a scan still needs to reveal the extent of the damage, Mourinho felt Sanchez’s reaction to the injury meant it was worse than a normal strain.
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“It is an aggressive muscular injury,” Mourinho said. “He has not had a scan yet but the player is experienced. He knows what the injury is. From my experience, the painful scream and the way it happened, it will be a long time. For me and Alexis Sanchez, the grade is different to the one that (Victor) Lindelof has and that was not easy.”
Lindelof recently suffered a thigh injury that he carried over from international duty with Sweden and aggravated it last weekend against Crystal Palace.
On paper, it’s a blow to a Manchester United side that is considerably think at the striker position, especially the way Mourinho rotates his lineups, and having Sanchez available for upcoming matches would be a nice security blanket to have if Romelu Lukaku and Marcus Rashford continue to struggle in front of goal. However, it’s not like Sanchez has been a spring chicken this season. He’s managed just one goal himself in the Premier League and looks well off the pace compared to his halcyon days as a star with Arsenal and Barcelona before that.
Mourinho has cycled between Sanchez, Lukaku and Rashford for the past few games, and now he’ll just have to rotate between the latter pair, if the injury is as bad as it is feared.