Why Ander Herrera was dropped for Basel game
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has explained why Ander Herrera was dropped for the Basel game last night.
It turns out it was purely down to numbers. Mourinho insists there was no specific reason for the Spaniard’s absence beyond the number of central midfielders at his disposal.
With Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba in-form and holding down the two midfield spots – at least until the injury sustained by Pogba during the Basel match – Mourinho opted to name captain Michael Carrick and Maroune Fellaini, who came on to replace Pogba and scored the opening goal, among the substitutes.
That meant there was no place in the matchday squad for Herrera, who had made his first Premier League start of the season in the 2-2 draw at Stoke City last weekend.
Mourinho confirmed there was no injury to Herrera that had been kept quiet ahead of the game.
According to the Manchester Evening News, the United boss said: “No reasons to be out. We are playing only with two midfield players, with Matic and Pogba, who are playing really well and without reason to change, the only match we decided to play with three he played, today we went back to two again and I had on the bench Carrick and Fellaini, which were also important players last season.
“We have a group of players who must be ready to play and not to play. Ashley Young was not on the bench in the last match and today he started the match and played 90 minutes and the next match you can have another surprise of some player you think is going to play and is not going to play.
“It’s the squad we have, I have to use the players and that’s the life in clubs with squads of quality.”