Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal on Friday revealed that Ander Herrera is an injury doubt for Saturday's Barclays Premier League home game against Aston Villa after the midfielder sustained a heavy knock at Upton Park in the FA Cup replay against West Ham United in midweek.
Wayne Rooney made his first-team return as a substitute in the closing stages of the morale-boosting win against West Ham United in the Emirates FA Cup and remains available for selection, with the boss keen to give the skipper more minutes.
Bastian Schweinsteiger is unlikely again to feature for United this season but Luke Shaw continues to make progress with the physios and is "doing great", according to the United manager at his Friday's press conference.
"I don’t know yet for sure, he (Herrera) was injured, but the problem is that we have to recover again within two days," van Gaal is quoted as saying by MUTV.
"That is a continuing problem, because we have to play so many matches when you are in so many competitions during this season, that is the only problem.
"He (Rooney) always wants to play. Yes, I think he shall receive more minutes but it’s always dependable on the game. You cannot say in advance that I give you 20 minutes or something like that; when it’s possible, I shall do that because we need Wayne in the team.
"I don't think Schweinsteiger shall play this season – I think, next season, he is prepared. Maybe he is prepared for the European Championship, I cannot predict. It is possible, but then that is also in our favour because then he is fit for the new competition. Shaw is now training on the pitch with the physiotherapist, it’s not with a trainer-coach, so that’s the difference. But he’s going great, it's unbelievable."
The boss was asked if he would need to shuffle his team as the season run-in.
"Yes, yes, I think so. I have to. It’s also better for the players, I think, but we have to wait and see if I do that tomorrow or (against) Palace. Everton in the FA Cup is, of course, (a game where) we have to line up the strongest team."
The Villans could have relegation confirmed before kick-off, depending on the result between Norwich City and Sunderland in Saturday's opening top-flight fixture.
Van Gaal reaffirmed his faith in young players as striker Markus Rashford continues to excel at the club.
"The players but also the manager and his staff has been frustrated we’ve not been consistent this season. When you have to line up every week another team because of injuries it’s difficult to create a team building process, but still we are in the race for the first positions in the league and the FA cup so I’m very happy we can do that."
"That is because of our policy, you shall have always this situation when you think you need to have not too big squads then you let the chance open for youngsters.
"You can compare apples with pears I think. We have to wait and see. Of course it is fantastic what Marcus has done until now but you cannot compare him with Ronaldo, he was not a striker at Manchester United I believe – you cannot compare," the Dutchman said.
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