Mour­inho of­fers to move United mal­con­tents

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - SPORTS - By AGENCE FRANCEPRESSE in Manch­ester, Eng­land

Manch­ester United man­ager Jose Mour­inho said he will lis­ten to of­fers for unhappy play­ers like Mem­phis De­pay and Mor­gan Sch­nei­der­lin in next month’s trans­fer win­dow.

Dutch winger De­pay and French mid­fielder Sch­nei­der­lin, both signed in 2015 by Louis van Gaal, have been the big­gest losers of Mour­inho’s first half-sea­son in charge at Old Traf­ford.

Mour­inho said he would not stand in ei­ther play­ers’ way if they asked to leave.

“I am al­ways open to lis­ten to of­fers for ev­ery player,” Mour­inho said ahead of his side’s trip to Crys­tal Palace in the Premier League on Wed­nes­day.

“More than lis­ten to of­fers, I am al­ways ready to lis­ten to the play­ers them­selves.

“So any player who knocks on my door and is not happy and wants to move, when the of­fers are cor­rect, I will never stop a player from leav­ing, even if it is to a ri­val.

“When Juan Mata left Chelsea to come to Manch­ester United (in Jan­uary 2014), no prob­lem at all. In my men­tal­ity, no prob­lem at all. I am al­ways open.”

Sch­nei­der­lin, who signed from Southamp­ton for a re­ported $31.7 mil­lion, is yet to start a league game this sea­son.

The 27-year-old has played only 86 min­utes of do­mes­tic first-team soc­cer — 73 of which came in a League Cup tie against third-tier Northamp­ton Town.

De­pay, bought for around $32 mil­lion from PSV Eind­hoven, has played 134 min­utes in all com­pe­ti­tions.

The winger’s one start was also in that Northamp­ton cup match, end­ing af­ter 55 min­utes.

Ever­ton has been linked with De­pay as it seeks a re­place­ment for Yan­nick Bo­lasie af­ter he was ruled out for the rest of the sea­son with a knee in­jury. The Tof­fees are also said to be in­ter­ested in Sch­nei­der­lin.

“What I can say is that I am happy with the squad I have,” Mour­inho added.

“I would like my squad to be my squad un­til the end of the sea­son and I am not go­ing to any player to say, ‘You are go­ing to leave be­cause I am not happy, be­cause I don’t want to have you.’

“I am happy with the play­ers I have, even with play­ers that are not hav­ing many op­por­tu­ni­ties to play.”

Mour­inho said play­ers out­side the first-team frame need only look at defender Phil Jones, who has cap­i­tal­ized on in­juries to Eric Bailly and Chris Smalling to reestab­lish him­self at cen­ter­back.

“From my point of view, I am happy to keep ev­ery­one and ev­ery­one will have a chance,” said Mour­inho, whose team is sixth in the Premier League ta­ble.

“Some­times the chance is there, you get it like Jones. Un­ex­pect­edly, you have Bailly out, Smalling out, every­body out and comes the game against Swansea and Jones is in and he is still there.”

Mour­inho is con­scious of the heavy sched­ule his team faces over the sec­ond half of the cam­paign as it con­tin­ues its runs in the League Cup and Europa League.

United could play as many as 65 games this sea­son and Mour­inho ex­plained that is one of the rea­sons be­hind his ap­par­ent U-turn over vet­eran Ger­man mid­fielder Bas­tian Sch­we­in­steiger.

The 32-year-old ap­peared to be on his way out of Old Traf­ford, but has re­cently re­turned to the first team lineup and made a sub­sti­tute ap­pear­ance in the re­cent League Cup tri­umph over West Ham.

Now, Mour­inho ex­pects Sch­we­in­steiger to re­main with United in the new year.

“I do,” said the Por­tuguese. “Un­less again the player knocks on our door with a fu­ture that he wants to grab with both hands.

“Then I never stop play­ers do­ing what they want if — I re­peat, if — the con­di­tions are right for the club.”

JA­SON CAIRNDUFF / REUTERS

Jose Mour­inho re­acts af­ter his Manch­ester United team beat Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur 1-0 in their English Premier League match at Old Traf­ford on Sun­day.

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