Solskjaer reveals key Man Utd star is doubtful for City semi-final

Date published: Sunday 5th January 2020 12:00

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is unsure if England defender Harry Maguire will be fit to face Manchester City in the Carabao Cup semi-final on Tuesday.

The 26-year-old appeared to be limping following a first-half challenge on Adama Traore during United’s 0-0 draw with Wolves in the FA Cup third round on Saturday.

Phil Jones was preparing to come on for Maguire but the centre-back eventually completed the 90 minutes and Jones was an unused substitute.

Solskjaer admitted he considered taking Maguire off at half-time and, when asked by BT Sport after the game whether the defender would be fit for United’s first leg against City at Old Trafford, he replied: “I don’t know.

“We were close to taking him off at half-time, but he battled through. Let’s see how he recovers. We hope so.”

Maguire has only missed four games in all competitions this season and has played every minute of the club’s Premier League campaign.

United are already missing defenders Axel Tuanzebe, Marcos Rojo and Eric Bailly and if Maguire is deemed unfit Jones will likely play alongside Victor Lindelof in the heart of the defence.

Solskjaer added on MUTV: “We were not sure if he should continue in the second half, but he was adamant he was going to be OK.

“He struggled a little bit but let’s see how he’ll recover. It’s not many days, it’s Sunday, Monday and then we go again Tuesday.”

Meanwhile, United are reported to have turned to Wolves frontman Raul Jimenez in their search for a new centre forward – and are readying an opening gambit of £50m for the Mexican.

The striker moved to Molineux on an initial loan deal from Benfica in summer 2018 and made a huge impact as Wolves secured European football on their return to the top flight; Jimenez finishing the campaign with 17 goals in 44 games.

 

That led to a permanent club record move estimated to be worth £32m going through over the summer, the former Atletico Madrid man signing a contract at Molineux until June 2023.

However, since then Jimenez has taken his game on to another level and has already matched his tally from last season, taking his overall total to 34 goals in 76 appearances for the old gold.

But, according to Goal, it is Jimenez’s record against sides in the top six which has particularly caught United’s attention, with the Mexican playing a part in 10 goals (scoring six times) in matches against them since joining Nuno Espirito Santo’s side. Read more…

 

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