Manchester United would 'benefit 100 per cent' from Bastian Schweinsteiger recall, says City's Ilkay Gundogan

The 32-year-old has been forced to train with the Under-23s as Mourinho exerts his authority

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The Independent Football

İlkay Gündoğan, the Manchester City midfielder, has expressed surprise at Bastian Schweinsteiger’s treatment at Manchester United but thinks his exclusion benefits their title rivals.

The 32-year-old has been forced to train with the Under-23s as Jose Mourinho exerts his authority at Old Trafford after replacing Louis van Gaal but Gündoğan, who won the World Cup with Germany alongside Schweinsteiger, believes it is a misstep. 

“I believe that Manchester United could 100 per cent benefit from a fit Bastian Schweinsteiger,” Gündoğan told Sport Bild. “He's not just some player, and also not only 18 or 19.”

Gündoğan has gained ground from Schweinsteiger's downturn in fortunes and was named in Germany's squad for this month's World Cup qualifiers after almost a year out of the side due to injury problems.

The former Borussia Dortmund midfielder has backed himself to fill the void left behind by Schweinsteiger for Joachim Löw’s world champions – but he was confident enough of doing that anyway.

“I trusted myself to do that before [Schweinsteiger's retirement], but this has nothing to do with saying his retirement is positive or negative. We should be thankful that we had such a great player,” he added.

Lukas Podolski, meanwhile, spent most of his 129 Germany caps lining up alongside Schweinsteiger and the 31-year-old is unhappy with the perceived lack of respect shown to his friend by Mourinho.

“When you look at the career Bastian has had, I can only say that what is happening there is simply not right for a player of his stature. I do not know what Mourinho has discussed with Bastian. 

“But is clear that it is not okay to drop someone like Basti to the reserves. A coach should always keep his door open to all players, and especially to players like Schweini.”