The Portuguese used second choice keeper Sergio Romero in the Europa League last season, with the Argentine making 12 appearances in total and claiming eight clean sheets.
De Gea, on the other hand, was used for domestic contests, but Mourinho has confirmed at a press conference ahead of the clash with Basel that, this time around, the Spaniard would feature in Champions League games.
Make no mistake: Romero’s performances between the sticks last season merit continued selection in Europe this time around, but leaving De Gea out of the Champions League would be nothing short of nonsensical.
You sense Romero only played in the Europa League last season because De Gea acquiesced to sitting out of the Europa League. But that was never going to happen this time around.
The prospect of playing in the Champions League was what kept the Spaniard at Old Trafford over the summer, after all, and Mourinho will know that United’s success in Europe this season will be largely determined by a player who has, time and time again, saved United’s skin when they needed him most.