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Manchester United ‘handed Raphael Varane injury boost’

Manchester United ‘handed Raphael Varane injury boost’

Raphael Varane could reportedly be available for Manchester United‘s Europa League contest with Omonia on Thursday night despite suffering an ankle injury in the Manchester derby.

The France international picked up the problem in the first half of Sunday’s 6-3 defeat to Manchester City but initially attempted to continue before the decision was made for him to be replaced.

After the match, Red Devils boss Erik ten Hag was coy on the seriousness of the problem, suggesting that he replaced the centre-back to prevent him from picking up “a bigger injury”.

“I don’t think so, that he would have carried on [if the score would have been closer],” Ten Hag told reporters when questioned on the change during his post-match press conference.

“But you get him off because when you are 4-0 down, you don’t want to take a risk to get a bigger injury. But I think it’s that big, the injury, that he couldn’t carry on.”

© Reuters

According to the Manchester Evening News, the injury is not a long-term issue, and he could potentially be available for the team’s next game against Omonia in the Europa League.

The report quotes a source as saying that the problem is ‘not bad’, and the Frenchman drove into the club’s Carrington training ground on Monday as usual.

Man United’s medical staff will now need to assess the defender ahead of the European contest in Cyprus, which comes before a trip to Everton in the Premier League next Sunday.

Varane has been a key player for the Red Devils this season, making seven appearances in all competitions, including six outings in the Premier League, forming a strong partnership with Lisandro Martinez at the back.

However, Man City were able to net six times during Sunday’s Premier League contest, with Varane leaving the field when the score was 4-0 to Pep Guardiola‘s side.

Raphael Varane in action for Manchester United on August 29, 2021© Reuters

Victor Lindelof was Varane’s replacement at the weekend, and the Sweden international could be in line to start on Thursday evening, should Ten Hag decide against risking the former Real Madrid centre-back.

Club captain Harry Maguire was absent for the Manchester derby due to a hamstring issue, while Axel Tuanzebe is also injured, leaving Man United short of options in the middle of their defence.

Phil Jones has also been left out of the club’s Premier League and Europa League squads, with the Englishman only able to play in the domestic cup competitions this term.

Man United will play another eight times before the end of the month, taking on Omonia twice in the Europa League, in addition to Sheriff Tiraspol, while they will face Everton, Newcastle United, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and West Ham United in the Premier League.

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