Jose Mourinho: Fred won't play until Manchester United defend better

Tanya Simon
December 7, 2018

He has made just six Premier League appearances since his £52m move from Shakhtar Donetsk in the summer and was not even among the substitutes for the 2-2 draw with Arsenal on Wednesday.

Holding suffered the injury during Wednesday night's 2-2 draw at Manchester United - with Arsenal immediately fearing the worst over their young defender.

Mourinho says he is reluctant to play the midfielder until he gets used to the Premier League and becomes better at positional discipline because the United defence needs protection.

"When the team is defensively stronger and doesn't need people in midfield to give balance to the team, rather than being involved in creation and attacking dynamically, I think the horizons for Fred change completely", Mourinho said.

"Between us [there are] no problems - between the manager and the players", he said.

"There are special players with special characteristics".

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'There are special players with special characteristics and just to give you a couple of examples, [Ander] Herrera, [Marcus] Rashford are the kind of players that even if their game was not phenomenal, that intensity, that desire, that passion, that sacrifice is always present.

"We're in it as a team".

But the United boss admitted "we need answers" ahead of playing Fulham on Saturday. One of the things have noticed in England is that there are no weak games in the Premier League.

But he has revealed he won't speak about two long-term casualties: Victor Lindelof and Alexis Sanchez.

Vote in the Irish Independent Sport Star Awards and you could win the ultimate sports prize. Despite the back and forth nature of the game, Emery's side still came away from Old Trafford with a 2-2 draw, a creditable result.

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