Ashley Young appeared alongside Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to speak to the media ahead of tonight’s Europa League match with Partizan Belgrade.
Young is expected to start and will lead the team out as captain.
This really should be the defender’s final Manchester United start for a long while.
What happens after the Partizan game?
Young is suspended to face Brighton and Hove Albion this weekend in the Premier League.
This is because he picked up his fifth booking of the season against Bournemouth.
Impressive youngster Brandon Williams has been pushing for a Premier League start. Now he has to start.
After falling on the wrong side of midweek cup appearance and weekend league game rotation, Williams shifts into the Premier League line up, meaning Young will start tonight to preserve the teenager for Sunday’s game.
Luke Shaw is closing in on a return to action. The United club website confirmed that the defender is getting nearer.
Shaw was at training on Wednesday at Carrington doing individual drills.
United don’t intend to rush him back before the international break but plan to have him available afterwards.
This sets United up for a new left-back rotation; Luke Shaw and Brandon Williams.
Let them battle it out and may the best player win, but both will be needed amid a busy fixture schedule.
Young becomes the odd one out
Shaw’s return and Williams’ emergence pushes Ashley Young to the side and so this could be his last start for a while.
But don’t bet on it. The veteran has proven his staying power and whether you like it or not, he is a player Ole Gunnar Solskjaer trusts.
We thought before the season that Young would have a minimal role but he has started the last eight Premier League games.
It is possible he reverts to right-back to cover for Aaron Wan-Bissaka, with Diogo Dalot out and finds his way into the team that way.
It’s even possible Young starts at right-back tonight and Marcos Rojo at left-back if United go with a flat back four. We’d rather see Ethan Laird given a chance.
If Dalot can make his return from injury too then Young will fall further down the pecking order.
Young needs a strong performance tonight, or to at least avoid a disaster, to leave his final impression before the international break as a good one as he prepares to miss the game at the weekend.
Luke Shaw’s return means United won’t have a need for Young over the next month, at least until the festive fixtures.
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