Jose Mourinho has admitted that he could field a youthful side for Manchester United’s final Premier League game of the season against Crystal Palace in order to prepare for the Europa League final.
Man United weathered a late storm in the second leg against Celta Vigo to claim a 1-1 draw and a place in the final against Ajax in Stockholm on May 24.
They will have to contend with three further Premier League games until then, with their final game of the season coming just three days before the crucial clash in Sweden.
And Mourinho, speaking soon after guiding his side to the Europa League final, noted that he may have to field a weakened XI against Sam Allardyce’s men.
“We have three league matches to play, hopefully Crystal Palace doesn’t have a lot to play in the last game because in the last game I am going to make a lot of changes,” he said.
“And hopefully nobody will complain because we have a final three days later.”
The next three games could conjure up come truly interesting line-ups for Man United. Mourinho has emphatically written off the Premier League as anything remotely important, with all the emphasis now on gearing up for 90 decisive minutes against Peter Bosz’s men – who will have 12 days to prepare for the final – later this month.
Supporters could see the likes of Axel Tuanzebe, Scott McTominay, Demetri Mitchell and Matt Olosunde, who all trained with the first team prior to the clash with Celta, feature over the next few weeks.
As for Mourinho’s hopes of taking on an Allardyce side with nothing to play for, avoiding defeat to Hull this weekend would guarantee their Premier League status for next season, giving United the respite they desperately need for what will be their 63rd and penultimate game of the campaign.