MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) – Manchester United skipper Harry Maguire will miss their Premier League game with Chelsea due to a knee issue while winger Jadon Sancho has also been ruled out with tonsillitis, interim boss Ralf Rangnick said on Wednesday.
United, whose hopes of finishing in the top-four were dealt a massive blow on Saturday following their 3-1 loss to Arsenal, could also be missing right back Aaron Wan-Bissaka when they welcome third-placed Chelsea to Old Trafford on Thursday.
Rangnick’s side are also without the injured Edinson Cavani, Luke Shaw, Paul Pogba and Fred but the German said he wanted the sixth-placed team to finish the season strongly even though Champions League qualification is out of their hands.
“We have four more games to play, the next two are at home and we’ll try to get as many points and win as many games as we possibly can,” Rangnick told reporters.
“In order to do that, we need to play on the best level we can. Chelsea are a good team but we know that if we play well, it’s possible to win tomorrow. I don’t think it makes sense to speculate about the Champions League.
“We need to be realistic. Even if we win all four games it’s not in our hands, what is in our hands is how we play, our level of performance. It’s important for this season to finish on the best possible note.”
United last week appointed Ajax Amsterdam boss Erik ten Hag as their new head coach to succeed Rangnick from the end of this season and the caretaker said the players had to make a good impression.
“Obviously, if results are not going well and we lost three of the last four games, the morale, energy in the locker room isn’t as good as it would be,” Rangnick said.
“Still, we have to perform, this is what we’re getting paid for, it’s important for the players, knowing the new manager, to show we are able to beat a team like Chelsea, this is our job… this is what we have been working for.”
(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)