Jose Mourinho has begun to make major roster decisions ahead of his first campaign as Manchester United manager. Reports late last week highlighted his choice to purge nine players from the current squad, with several notable names jumping off of the page.
From world-class veterans to several promising youth products, his choices have touched a wide range of individuals within the club. While the actions taken are certainly not completely unexpected (The Special One tends to shake things up a bit when joining a new team), the timing and players involved have certainly raised some eyebrows.
We highlight those believed to be involved and some others that may be on Mourinho’s shortlist for a permanent vacation from Old Trafford.
The player who grabbed the most attention from these possible changes is German midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger. Having only just arrived last summer to great fanfare, the World Cup champion became the only German to ever feature in United’s first team and many believed his presence in the middle of the pitch could drive Louis Van Gaal’s team towards success.
Suspensions and injuries limited “Schweini” to only 18 league appearances and one goal, as he was unable to find a rhythm within the squad. After over a decade playing for Bayern Munich, the 31-year old midfield legend always seemed a bit out of place and uncomfortable in his new surroundings.
It has been a difficult summer for Bastian, as Germany failed to reach the Euro 2016 final and eventually calling it quits on his international career as well. It can be assumed that he will look to head back to the Bundesliga and there will certainly be no shortage of clubs wanting to bring him on board.
With the Paul Pogba signing waiting in the wings, Bastian’s midfield role and contributions look to be unnecessary for Jose Mourinho in the future.