Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has threatened to play the kids in the Red Devils’ final Premier League game of the season – should they make the final of the Europa League.
United host Crystal Palace at Old Trafford on Sunday May 21 – just three days before the showpiece of Europe’s second-tier competition in Stockholm.
Mourinho’s side host Celta Vigo in the semi-finals and will play either Lyon or Ajax should they negotiate their way past the Spanish outfit.
United drew with Swansea on Sunday, their 10th home stalemate of the season, leaving them a point behind fourth-placed Manchester City and third-placed Liverpool.
The winners of the Europa League will automatically qualify for next season’s Champions League, and Mourinho has already threatened to play a weakened side against Palace should he deem it necessary.
“It’s a consequence of our success but it’s also of the calendar,” Mourinho said of the Swansea draw.
He added: “Imagine if we were also in the FA Cup semi-final. We will be playing Tottenham the last week, so when we played Burnley, that game would also to be played later.
“When? When? When? When will we be playing that game against Burnley?
“Because until the end of the season we are going to play every two or three days, so when would we be playing against Burnley? After the FA Cup final? In June? In next pre-season? When would we be playing this game?
“So in the end it was a bless that we didn’t play the FA Cup semi-final but we go through the same problem, you are punished for doing well and if we beat Celta, we have the final – in this moment it is obviously hypothetical – but the Europa League final is on the Wednesday and we play against Crystal Palace on the Sunday and before that we play Southampton away two days before.
- Ian Wright and Danny Murphy slam Premier League d0:40
- Drama in Roman Reigns vs Braun Strowman0:30
- IAN WRIGHT SAYS HE WOULD CHOSE TO PLAY FOR SPURS 1:03
- TYSON FURY DARES HIS PAL TO EAT SOMEONE ELSE’S FO0:39
- ARSENAL TV PRESENTER VERBALLY ABUSED BY TOTTENHAM0:50
- Pochettino and Wenger react to Spurs 2-0 Arsenal2:42
This is the man who has made Manchester United’s bench today
“They want us to play the final, and with all respect with Celta – it’s a hypothetical situation – that we would be playing the final in disaster consequences.
“So again maybe this result is also a bless, because maybe I can bring Nicky Butt and his team to play against Crystal Palace.
“And hopefully Crystal Palace doesn’t need a game to stay in the division because it would be very, very bad if they needed the points for us to play with the Under-23s.
“So it’s difficult. But again the players they give everything, I’m very happy with that.”
If United do play a weakened side – they could be slapped with a fine from the Premier League.
Wolves were hit with a suspended fine in 2011 and Blackpool were fined £25,000 the following year for playing heavily rotated teams.