Jose Mourinho: I will rotate my squad ahead of Europa League final

Taylor Byrd
May 15, 2017

Ander Herrera wants Manchester United's supporters to turn Old Trafford into a cauldron when his side look to complete victory over Celta Vigo in Thursday's Europa League semi-final return leg.

Terrible that Eric Bailly will miss the Europa League final, given that he's by far Manchester United's best defender.

The result means Manchester United can not finish in the top four this season and must win the Europa League final against Ajax to qualify for next season's Champions League. "I never saw, in all my career, two goalkeepers be such friends", he said after Thursday's 1-1 draw at Old Trafford, which saw United scrape into the final to face Ajax. "We suffered until the end and it was open until the last second", United manager Mourinho told BT Sport.

An unfortunate knack for drawing games they have dominated has left United sixth in the standings and four points off a Champions League berth, with 12 matches in the 25-game unbeaten run which ended at Arsenal last weekend finishing level. "It would be fantastic".

In addition to finding the right center-back partnership for the final - with Daley Blind again not convincing enough to start on the 24th of May and the return of Phil Jones and Chris Smalling to full fitness, Mourinho will also have a selection headache in the goalkeeping area.

"We can win a trophy and by winning that trophy we can play Champions League next season".

Having reached the League Cup final and the quarterfinals of the FA Cup, as well as the Europa League final in Stockholm, their problems have only mounted.

So impressive since arriving from Villarreal last summer, the 23-year-old Ivory Coast worldwide was shown a straight red card for raising his hands during a heated end to the 1-1 draw with Celta. The goal had the effect of freeing United from their shackles, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Jesse Lingard and Pogba all arrowing shots over the bar. Roncaglia's looping 85th-minute header set the scene for a nerve-wracking finale, but despite losing Bailly, United held on.

"In the end, when the game was hard, when they were better than us and we were in trouble and not playing well, it was that mentality, that desire, that togetherness that made the boys fight until the end", he said.

Resilient Lyon made a strong comeback late in the first half with their top scorer Alexandre Lacazette's two goals in less than two minutes.

But they could not find an all-important fourth to send the tie into extra-time. With the Europa League final coming up he knows that is his priority, even ahead of Premier League games. "That's a great reward", Ajax chief coach Peter Bosz said after the win. "My players were downcast in the locker room".

"We'll have to create chances and take them, but also remain calm and organised when we lose the ball".

"I think when the result is 0-0 and such a penalty is not given it's a crucial moment of the game".

Other reports by VideoGamingPros

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