In­juries mar United’s Europa march

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - SPORTS -

play sooner than ex­pected. Maybe in­stead of mid-May, you can come back to play in early May.”

Asked when the pair might likely re­turn to ac­tion, Mour­inho replied: “If it was me, I think to­mor­row.”

Mour­inho had kinder words for left­back Luke Shaw, af­ter pub­licly and sharply crit­i­ciz­ing the Eng­land in­ter­na­tional on sev­eral oc­ca­sions in re­cent weeks.

“Luke did some­thing new for me that means a lot to me,” Mour­inho said.

“Af­ter 90 min­utes, be­fore I knew that I have to change Zla­tan, Luke had cramps. I had Ash­ley Young ready to come on, but Luke told me, ‘I am go­ing to play th­ese 30 min­utes with cramps. No prob­lem. If you need to make a change in an­other po­si­tion, do it, be­cause I’m ready for it.’

“Th­ese are the kind of things that make me have trust in a player. Men­tal­ity is fun­da­men­tal.

Mour­inho also ex­pressed reser­va­tions about re­ports Eng­land Un­der-21 coach Aidy Boothroyd plans to call Rash­ford up for the Un­der-21 Euro­pean Cham­pi­onship in Poland.

“He can­not play ev­ery game,” Mour­inho said af­ter be­ing asked if Rash­ford was ca­pa­ble of fill­ing in for Ibrahi­movic.

“On top of that, I think you are try­ing to take him for the Euro Un­der-21s. It’s hard for the kid in terms of play­ing ev­ery match, but I al­ways trust the play­ers with a spe­cial men­tal­ity.”

Rash­ford teed up Hen­rikh Mkhi­taryan for a 10th-minute goal that put United 2-1 up on ag­gre­gate, only for cap­tain Sofi­ane Hanni to equal­ize for An­der­lecht in the 32nd minute.

Roared on by its rau­cous away sup­port, An­der­lecht gave United sev­eral scares be­fore fi­nally suc­cumb­ing in the 107 th minute.

“We played a very good match. Un­for­tu­nately the re­sult isn’t so good,” said the Bel­gians’ coach, Rene Weiler.

“We played very well in the first half. We equal­ized, but couldn’t score a sec­ond goal. When you con­cede a win­ner in ex­tra time, it’s al­ways dif­fi­cult to find a way back.”

Else­where, Ajax reached its first Euro­pean semi­fi­nal in 20 years with a 4-3 ag­gre­gate win over Schalke af­ter”ex­tra time and Celta Vigo reached a Euro­pean semi­fi­nal for the first time af­ter a 1-1 draw at Genk gave it a 4-3 ag­gre­gate win over the Bel­gians.

In Is­tan­bul, Lyon beat Be­sik­tas 7-6 on penal­ties af­ter the Turk­ish side had won 2-1 on the night to level the tie at 3-3.

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