Antonio Valencia has videoed working hard in the gym after undergoing surgery for a fractured arm last week.
The Ecuadorian was seen nursing a bandaged wrist during Manchester United’s 1-0 win over Manchester City in the League Cup.
He was duly left out of the starting XI for Man United’s clash with Burnley on Saturday, and it was later confirmed that the 31-year-old would be out for some time after going under the knife.
Valencia was videoed putting in the hard yards on an exercise bike just days after his operation.
Jose Mourinho has, in the space of a week, lost his two most reliable defenders to long term injuries. Eric Bailly, an impenetrable stalwart so far this season, won’t play until January, and Valencia will reportedly miss out for up to six weeks (although the exact length of his absence is yet to be confirmed).
And as uncertainty continues to pervade the first-team, such an injury acts as a tumultuous set-back. Valencia’s steady, reliable presence in this mercurial United side has been invaluable. Every game, he is there, regardless of context, putting in a composed, powerful performance.
United fans will be desperate to see Matteo Darmian – now Mourinho’s first choice right-back – make the slot his own in the coming weeks.