Jose Mourinho to rest Wayne Rooney, other first-team stars, as Manchester United start Europa League campaign

Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney will be rested along with several other stars for the club's Europa League group match against Dutch side Feyenoord in Rotterdam on Thursday

AFP September 15, 2016 15:50:28 IST
Jose Mourinho to rest Wayne Rooney, other first-team stars, as Manchester United start Europa League campaign

Manchester: Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney will be rested along with several other stars for the club's Europa League group match against Dutch side Feyenoord in Rotterdam on Thursday.

The 30-year-old England skipper has been omitted by Jose Mourinho from the squad along with fellow first team regulars, defensive duo Luke Shaw and Ecuadorean Antonio Valencia. Jesse Lingard and Henrikh Mkhitaryan's hopes of a chance to prove themselves, after being unceremoniously substituted at half-time of the Manchester derby last weekend, have been dashed, as they too remained behind.

Jose Mourinho to rest Wayne Rooney other firstteam stars as Manchester United start Europa League campaign

Marcus Rashford is set for his first start of the season. AFP file image

Young talent Marcus Rashford could well get his first start of the campaign — having been restricted to cameo roles thus far — whilst others who have found it hard to get some action could also figure, like veteran Michael Carrick and Dutchman Memphis Depay.

"He (Rashford) is going to play is the only thing I can say. I trust him completely and I know his future will be absolutely brilliant," said the Portuguese, who was scathing of some of his players after the City defeat, particularly defender Eric Bailly.

United's other opponents in Group A — a draw  Mourinho compared to a Champions League group — are Turkish side Fenerbahce featuring former Red Devils striker Robin van Persie and Ukrainian outfit Zorya Luhansk.

United's Spanish attacking midfielder Juan Mata warned that after the disappointment of derby day there was "no time for mourning".

"On Thursday we're going to play the first game in the Europa League, away against Feyenoord, a classic in European football," Mata said on his weekly blog.

"It's going to be a very demanding debut in this competition," he added of the road to the final in Stockholm next May.

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