Manchester United are likely to be without one of their key man – Antonio Valencia for the derby against Manchester City at Old Trafford on 10 September due to the Ecuador international’s late arrival back from international duty. The 31-year-old doesn’t return to Manchester until Friday, the day before the derby, as he is travelling with Ecuador to face Peru in a World Cup Qualifier. Valencia has been one of the most impressive performers for United under Jose Mourinho and missing him will be a big blow for the Red Devils. Valencia is also on the shortlist for the Premier League’s Player of the month for August.
Two other players Marcos Rojo and Sergio Romero are also in doubt for the derby. The duo is featuring in the World Cup qualifier for Argentina. But their absence will not hurt United much as they are still not playing a major role for the first team.
“The day before Man City, we will still have Sergio Romero, Marcos Rojo and Antonio Valencia arriving,” Mourinho said to the club’s official website.
“It will be a complicated process but we know it is like this when we have these players. And I would love all of the players to go because it would mean that everybody is being selected for their national teams.”
If Valencia misses the derby then Phil Jones, Matteo Darmian or Timothy Fosu-Mensah could make their first appearance of the season.
Meanwhile, Mourinho could be without a fourth player for the important clash after Henrikh Mkhitaryan went off injured during Armenia’s 3-0 friendly loss to the Czech Republic.