Jose Mourinho has overlooked Luke Shaw for a fourth successive match, raising fresh questions over the Manchester United left-back’s future.
A double leg break brought last season to a premature — and horrific — end for the 21-year-old, who has struggled to make his mark under Mourinho.
Niggling injuries on the comeback trail have disrupted his campaign but, despite being fit since mid-January, Shaw has made just one appearance against Wigan in the FA Cup fourth round.
The left-back was not involved in the subsequent three squads and Mourinho confirmed the England international will not feature against St Etienne on Thursday in the Europa League last-32 first leg.
“He’s not playing tomorrow,” Mourinho said. “Because my team is playing well and I am happy with my back four, and I’m going to repeat [Antonio] Valencia, [Eric] Bailly, [Chris] Smalling, [Daley] Blind.”A double leg break brought last season to a premature – and horrific – end for the 21-year-old, who has struggled to make his mark under Mourinho.
Shaw started in three of United’s Europa League games in the group stage, including November’s 2-1 loss to Fenerbahce and 4-0 win over Feyenoord, but was injured for the final game against Zorya Luhansk.
Mourinho had previously questioned Shaw’s flexibility and said that had been behind his decision to select Matteo Darmian on the bench ahead of the England international.
“The only thing I can say is that Luke is working well. I don’t have any problem and he’s working well. He’s fighting hard, there is no problem with him,” Mourinho said.
“He has to work and wait. But I want one defender on the bench and the defender on the bench is somebody who can play more than one position.
“And Darmian can play left-back, right-back and would be an emergency central defender for us, so my choice was Darmian.”