Zlatan Ibrahimovic: Manchester United striker 'ready for the final'
- Author: Julie Sanders May 21, 2017,
May 21, 2017, 6:55
A day after head coach Peter Bosz rubbished Mourinho's claim that Ajax would have an advantage over Manchester United in Wednesday's final because they have played fewer games this season, the Portuguese hit back by questioning their opponents' participation in the Europa League.
Ajax started the season in the Champions League qualification rounds before a two-legged defeat to Russian side Rostov meant they dropped into the Europa League group stages, where United's campaign also started. A top-four finish is now beyond them but with a Euorpa League final against Ajax still to come, they could still qualify for the Champions League next season.
"Tim Fosu-Mensah plays Sunday and if the reaction is good and if he manages to play the game without problems, then he's an option for us for the final", said Mourinho.
"Marouane [Fellaini, hamstring] is the question mark, we wait for today's scans". "You will have two goalkeepers, Joel Pereira and Kieran O'Hara, we will have Demetri Mitchell, Scott McTominay, Josh Harrop, Matthew Willock, Angel Gomes and Zachary Dearnley". I think lots of them together, no. I think for the kids it will be a big occasion, it will always be good experience for them.
Whilst a host of Manchester United stars will be rested for the Europa League final on Wednesday, this should still be a fascinating match due to the amount of young kids involved.
"Crutches for Shaw, Young, Rojo and Zlatan, but we all go together", he said.
"Paul Pogba is fine - strong guy, strong mentality", Mourinho said.
"I wasn't surprised, I really don't know why you're surprised they reached the final", Mourinho added.
Before Sam Allardyce took over the reigns from Alan Pardew, Crystal Palace were in all sorts of problems and in danger of getting relegated, but Big Sam pulled off another grand escape and eventually kept the Eagles in the elite division.
"The only positive is for me to save my players and give him the opportunity for Wednesday".
"I don't know", the United boss said. "I know how to handle the pressure, how to get ready for that game, just play my game and be myself".
The former Porto, Inter Milan and Real Madrid manager also gave fitness update of his senior players ahead of Sunday's match against Palace.