Jose Mourinho has explained why he had to change up his team selection for Manchester United’s Europa League Round of 16 clash against FC Rostov.
The Portuguese boss made seven changes for his clash at the Olimp-2 stadium, as Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo, Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic were the only players to keep their place in the side from the draw with Bournemouth.
It was surprising to see Henrikh Mkhitaryan back in action after Jose Mourinho confirmed he was questioning his selection after seeing the state of the pitch and the Armeinian’s recent injury, but it was the right decision after he found the opening goal of the game in the first-half.
Speaking prior to the clash, Mourinho revealed he had to make changes to make his side more solid.
“We have to try to adapt to it,” he said.
“We have to try to create a team with qualities to fight against a hard opponent and difficult conditions.
“So we try to adapt, to be solid, to be competitive because we have to manage to get a result.
“I don’t think it’s a passing game, I don’t think it’s a game for creation or great dynamic.
“It will be more direct, more flighted than played, so let’s go for it.”
With Zlatan Ibrahimovic accepting a three-match ban, it was the right choice to utilise his skill set while possible in the Europa League, as he registered an assist for Mkhitaryan’s opener.
It was a solid team for Mourinho and hopes are the players are in good shape as they face Chelsea in the FA Cup Quarter-final on March 13.