Manchester United boosted by return of key trio before Tottenham test

Erik ten Hag was encouraged by the choices now available to him and also had a parting message for Jadon Sancho

Richard Jolly
Senior Football Correspondent
Friday 12 January 2024 12:53 GMT
Casemiro is back in contention to play for Manchester United
Casemiro is back in contention to play for Manchester United (Getty Images)

Casemiro, Lisandro Martinez and Luke Shaw could all make their Manchester United comebacks against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday as Erik ten Hag’s injury problems are finally easing.

Antony and Christian Eriksen, who both missed Monday’s 2-0 win at Wigan, are also back in contention as Ten Hag relished the prospect of having more options and a stronger bench after his substitutes in the FA Cup were either young players or back-up goalkeepers.

But the United manager restricted himself to a brief message about Jadon Sancho, who has been excluded from the squad for four months and joined Borussia Dortmund on loan on Thursday, saying: “I hope he is doing well. I wish him the best of luck and it will be a success.”

Casemiro has missed United’s last 14 games with a thigh injury sustained in the Carabao Cup defeat to Newcastle on 1 November while Martinez has not played since United’s first six games of the season and underwent surgery on a foot problem.

Shaw has sat out United’s last three games while Antony also had a minor hamstring issue and Eriksen had a virus.

Manager Ten Hag said: “In the last couple of days Licha Martinez was training, Casemiro was training and Luke Shaw was training so there are players returning. They are coming in for selection on Sunday. Eriksen was ill in the week; he will return, Antony will return. Amad [Diallo] will return so we have more choices in this moment in the squad to put out a starting 11 and create a bench.”

As well as the six players who are available again now, United have a trio of others who should be back soon.

“Mason Mount will return but take a little longer, Tyrell Malacia will return as well, Victor Lindelof is also on his way back but it will take some weeks and takes time to get back into match fitness,” Ten Hag added.

However, United are still without striker Anthony Martial. Ten Hag added: “He is not fit so he is not okay so we want all the players to be fit for the game so he is not. We have to make him fit and it is his job as well to get ready.”

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