Louis van Gaal will have only one of his three captains available for tomorrow’s home fixture against relegation-threatened Leicester City as Darren Fletcher edges towards joining West Ham.
The Dutchman raised eyebrows upon announcing he had three captains, but this weekend only Wayne Rooney will be available as Michael Carrick prepares for a month on the sidelines.
Despite losing two senior members of the squad, the manager is adamant that he has all he needs and more as transfer deadline day draws near.
“Every day I read that I am interested in players. I am not interested in players, only selling,” said the former Barcelona boss.
“He is now in West Ham, I believe. We have to wait and see. He is my third captain, an important guy in the dressing room. I like him as a human being. But he has not played so much.”
Fletcher, 30, has returned to full fitness this season after missing the best part of two years with a long-term bowel condition.
However, he has only played 12 times this campaign and is thought to have undergone a medical at West Ham, who are competing with United for European qualification.
The Scottish midfielder looks set to complete a free transfer to Sam Allardyce’s side after two decades at Old Trafford.
Darren Fletcher having a medical with West Ham today. Valencia and West Brom were also interested #MUFC
— Ben Smith (@BenSmithBBC) January 30, 2015
Meanwhile United, who have used a league-high 31 players so far, will be without Carrick for a month after he ruptured a muscle in training.
Even so, United will not be adding to the squad any further meaning Victor Valdes, who made his United debut for the Under 21’s in midweek, will remain their only January signing.
Van Gaal is focused on making amends for the club’s 5-3 humiliation at Leicester earlier in the season and admits his side need to be swifter in attack.
“It’s true that we have not created too many chances in the last two or three matches, but therefore I have changed the system,” said the 63-year-old.
“We have to play more quickly because our opponents are defending and make a small space, so it’s difficult then to attack.
“Everybody knows that but we also need a little bit of luck and we have to finish the chances.”
The Red Devils will be looking for redemption on Saturday after suffering a humiliating 5-3 defeat at the King Power Stadium, a game which they had led 3-1, earlier in the season.
However United will be hoping for an easier ride this time out having won nine of the last ten meetings between the sides.
Their visitors currently sit bottom of the Premier League while a victory would lift United to third in the table.
Main image courtesy of FIFATV via YouTube, with thanks.