Jose Mourinho has noted ahead of Manchester United’s clash with FC Basel on Tuesday that Victor Lindelof needs time to adapt to the pace of the Premier League .
The Swede, who arrived over the summer for £31m, endured a difficult competitive debut against Real Madrid back in August and hasn’t featured at all in any of Man United’s first four Premier League games.
He is in line to start alongside Chris Smalling for United’s Champions League opener with the Swiss champions, however, as Eric Bailly and Phil Jones serve the last game of their respective suspensions.
And Mourinho, speaking at a press conference ahead of the clash with Raphaël Wicky’s side, noted that Lindelof – while not ready for the Premier League – won’t need any time to adapt to the Champions League.
“There is no need for him to adapt to Champions league but he needs a bit of time to adapt to the Premier league especially the new Premier League,” he said.
“He is very bright and very clam and step by step he will be there. I am more than confident for tomorrow, he is a very good player with a very good potential.”
Robert Lewandowski actually went out of his way to praise Lindelof after the two went head to head in the Champions League, such was the Swede’s composure and control at the back for Benfica on the continental stage.
The Premier League is a different beast entirely and one Lindelof will have to wrestle with for some time before he can properly feel at home, but he already has 12 Champions League appearances under his belt and supporters will demand to see what he can offer following an ambiguous start to his time at Old Trafford.