Mourinho confirms star ‘will start’ Europa League final

Date published: Friday 12th May 2017 2:54

Sergio Romero will start the Europa League final instead of David de Gea barring injury, Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has confirmed.

The Red Devils head to Sweden for a mouth-watering match against Ajax on May 24 after completing their final three Premier League fixtures.

They secured their place in the Stockholm finale by edging past Celta Vigo, with Romero performing impressively in both last week’s 1-0 win in Spain and the 1-1 draw at Old Trafford on Thursday.

The Argentina goalkeeper has played 11 of the 14 Europa League matches this season but remains back-up to the outstanding De Gea, naturally leading to questions as to whether Mourinho will switch to the coveted Spaniard for the final.

However, the United boss has moved to end the debate before it has begun by throwing his support behind Romero.

“No dilemma, no dilemma,” Mourinho said.

“They are two fantastic goalkeepers. I never saw in all my career two goalkeepers to be so friendly, because it is a position where you always have a little bit of rivalry, especially if you are both the same kind of level.

“We are speaking about the Argentina national goalkeeper and the Spain national goalkeeper.

“They are friends and they support each other all the time. I never saw a bad face, I always saw them supporting each other.

“I think it is fair that Sergio is going to play the final and David accepts.

“He accepts that especially because he has already played Europa League matches and if we win the trophy, David wins the trophy because he played two matches against Feyenoord and against Fenerbahce.

“But if everything goes normal and we have no problems, Sergio plays the final.”

United will be without Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Marcos Rojo, Ashley Young, Luke Shaw and Tim Fosu-Mensah for the Europa League final through injury, while Eric Bailly is suspended following his moment of madness on Thursday.

So impressive since arriving from Villarreal last summer, the 23-year-old was shown a straight red card for raising his hands during a heated end to the 1-1 draw with Celta.

“I don’t know the incident, I didn’t see,” Mourinho said. “I don’t want to see now, maybe Friday.

“But even if it was unfair, I don’t know, but even if it was unfair I don’t think UEFA rules will allow any chance of an appeal, so I don’t think he plays the final.

“So if he doesn’t play the final, he has to play the remaining matches in the Premier League and give rest to some of the others.”

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