Jose to freeze out Schweinsteiger

The high wages of Bastian Schweinsteiger are preventing the out-of- favour German midfielder from moving on from Manchester United to other clubs.
The high wages of Bastian Schweinsteiger are preventing the out-of- favour German midfielder from moving on from Manchester United to other clubs.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON • Jose Mourinho has made it clear that Bastian Schweinsteiger will not play for Manchester United again during his tenure.

The German midfielder, considered surplus to requirements and exiled to the reserves by the Portuguese manager, has insisted that he will not join another club in Europe.

And United are finding it difficult to offload him before next week's transfer deadline because the Germany World Cup winner is on weekly wages of £200,000 (S$357,000).

Mourinho, however, warned the 31-year-old that he would rather throw a youngster from United's academy into the first team than field the ageing player.

"I have 23 players in the squad and in principle, nobody is leaving," said the manager. "No one is coming and 23 players is more than enough. If we have any kind of problem or any kind opportunity, I have a few young players in the academy that I will be more than happy to (give a chance)."

Asked if Schweinsteiger could play for United again, he said: "I think it's very difficult to happen... we have five players for two (midfield) positions, so it's very difficult for an opportunity to arise."

Mourinho also took a sarcastic shot at Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, who said that United's treatment of Schweinsteiger could put off other players from joining the club.

He said: "I thought, when I read some quotes from people at Bayern Munich, they would run to Manchester to bring (Schweinsteiger) back, but no, that didn't happen. I'm quite surprised Karl-Heinze is not here to take him back.

"So I think we're going to have a very quiet week, not surrounded by helicopters, waiting for somebody to leave or to arrive, so I am more than happy with the squad I have."

It was an indication that United will not sign any more players before the transfer window closes.

The Red Devils, who have won their opening two games of the Premier League season, take on Hull, who have a similar record, today.

Pre-season signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic has scored four times in his first three United games. Should he extend his run at Hull, the Swede will become the first United player in 91 years to score in his first four matches for the club.

In Europe, United were handed a tough group stage in this season's Europa League, after being drawn with Fenerbahce, Feyenoord and Ukrainian side Zorya yesterday.

"Fenerbahce are Champions League (standard), as are Feyenoord. It is a big match to play in Istanbul as it is in Rotterdam, so it is a good draw for our squad," said Mourinho.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 27, 2016, with the headline 'Jose to freeze out Schweinsteiger'. Print Edition | Subscribe