Jose Mourinho has taken time to explain the reason why defender Eric Bailly is currently being omitted from Manchester United’s first team squad.

The Ivory Coast international suffered an ankle injury on international duty back in November which has ruled him out for three months.

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The 24-year-old has since played 8 games for the Red Devils, as his last game played came on 7 April against Manchester City.

It was reported that the defender might have fallen out with United manager Jose Mourinho in recent days.

However, the Portuguese boss has made it clear that the 2018 World Cup has been the main effect for omitting the Ivorian from the first team line-up.


Former Real Madrid and Chelsea manager has reiterated that he was trying to help his centre-backs hoping to earn a place at the World Cup.

“There’s no situation, he’s fine, no injury,” said Mourinho. “He’s one of our five central defenders. Honestly, my work is not about World Cups and preparing players for them.”

“But he’s the only central defender that his country is not in the World Cup so if I have to make a more emotional, effective choice to help my players, he’s the one I won’t help until the end of the season.”

“I try not to, I try to be a good team manager and that means a bit cold, selfish, but I’m not as bad as that.”

“I still have space for a little bit of feelings.”


Bailly has moved to the Old Trafford in the summer of 2016 from Villarreal for a reported fee of £30m.

The centre-back, who won Africa Cup of Nations in 2015 with the Ivory Coast, played 16 matches for United in all competitions this season.

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