Bailly suffered ankle ligament damage whilst on international duty back in November and Mourinho, ahead of the Ivorian undergoing surgery in December, noted he would be out for two to three months.
And Zlatan, having made a miraculous early return from knee ligament damage, was set for a month out after coming off at half time against Burnley on Boxing Day.
Speaking at a press conference ahead of Saturday’s clash with Huddersfield Town, Mourinho confirmed the pair would return in time for the Champions League knockout stages.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) February 2, 2018
Mourinho on Bailly & Ibrahimovic to MUTV: "They are working on the pitch but not yet with us as a group so they are not very close to a return. I want to believe that by Champions League time, around the end of the month, they will be back"
— Simon Peach (@SimonPeach) February 2, 2018
Supporters will be delighted to hear following that defensive meltdown at Wembley that Bailly, easily the side’s best defender when in full flow, is finally coming close to being back on the pitch.
The 23-year-old begun this campaign in imperious fashion alongside Phil Jones, providing a bedrock for a regimented yet ruthless United side that would, unlike last season, ensure leads taken in games would remain intact.
But it was not to be, such is the Ivorian’s unfortunate susceptibility to receiving knocks – even more so than Jones. Supporters will just hope he can remain fit as the campaign reaches its crescendo over the next few months.