Manchester United vs Real Sociedad: Injured trio not ready to return as Paul Pogba steps up recovery

Donny van de Beek, Edinson Cavani and Scott McTominay remain sidelined

Mark Critchley
Northern Football Correspondent
@mjcritchley
Wednesday 24 February 2021 14:45
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Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba
Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba

Manchester United will be without Donny van de Beek, Edinson Cavani and Scott McTominay once again for Thursday's Europa League tie with Real Sociedad.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer confirmed on Wednesday that the trio, who missed Sunday's 3-1 win over Newcastle through injury, will not recover in time to return for the last-32 second leg at Old Trafford.

Solskjaer added that Paul Pogba’s recovery from a thigh injury was progressing but that he is not yet in contention to play, having been unavailable since the 3-3 draw with Everton earlier this month.

“They'll still be missing,” the United manager said. “They've not joined training so they won't be ready, no. Paul has been outside on the grass and is starting to step up his recovery but he's not near the team for this game.”

“It'll be more or less the same squad that we had against Newcastle."

Highly-rated midfielder Hannibal Mejbri is also unavailable after picking up an ankle injury while with the Under-23s, having recently stepped up to train with United's first team.

Mejbri's fellow teenagers Amad and Shola Shoretire are available to Solskjaer. Both were included in the squads for the 4-0 first leg win over Sociedad and the victory against Newcastle.

“Hannibal is injured for about a month," Solskjaer said. "Amad and Shola will, of course, be involved. They are in the squad but I am not going to tell you if they are starting or not.”

Solskjaer will still be without several members of his regular backroom staff after they were forced to self-isolate, with academy coaches Nicky Butt and Mark Dempsey remaining on the first team bench.

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