Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hopes to have Harry Maguire back for the Europa League final after confirming the Manchester United captain sustained ankle ligament damage on Sunday.
The 28-year-old was on the cusp of becoming the first outfield player in the club’s history to complete 72 consecutive Premier League matches until being forced off towards the end of Sunday’s 3-1 win at Aston Villa.
Maguire missed his first top-flight match since joining United in 2019 on Tuesday when former club Leicester came to Old Trafford.
Solskjaer confirmed in his pre-match interview with MUTV that the centre-back had avoided a fracture. However, he faces a battle to get back for the Europa League final against Villarreal on May 26.
“Obviously we’ve had scans and the good news is there’s no fracture,” the United boss said.
“(There is) ligament damage and hopefully we’ll see him again this season. Hopefully ready for the final.”
Gareth Southgate will also be sweating on Maguire’s fitness. The England boss names his Euro 2020 squad on May 25.
United linked with shock Arsenal swoop
Meanwhile, Manchester United are reportedly planning a shock swoop for Arsenal’s Ainsley Maitland-Niles this summer and have plans to alter his position.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been tipped to bring in some big-name recruits this summer to build on a solid season. But he also wants to provide competition for some of his established stars and give himself extra options. One such position is right-back, with Aaron Wan-Bissaka firmly entrenched as the club’s starter.
The former Crystal Palace man has made 67 top-flight appearances since moving to Old Trafford. But it has been suggested the Norwegian tactician is keen to have a more attacking alternative at his disposal.
And, according to The Daily Mail, Maitland-Niles is the man they want despite the impending return from Milan of Diogo Dalot. The Londoner, capped five times by England, has spent the second half of 2020-2021 on loan with West Brom.
He has impressed despite the Baggies failing to avoid relegation to the Championship. The former Ipswich Town loan star has started 12 Premier League games and been used in central midfield.
But he is also comfortable at right back and that is where the Red Devils are keen to deploy him. It remains to be seen if the Gunners would be willing to sell but Maitland-Niles seems open to a permanent exit.