Manchester United have suffered a double selection setback ahead of their Premier League clash with Leicester City a week on Saturday after it was revealed both Edinson Cavani and Fred are expected to be unavailable due to their national team commitments.
The Red Devils have won just one of their last four fixtures in all competitions, falling to defeat against West Ham United and Aston Villa while a weakened Everton side held them to a draw last time out.
United’s poor form and underwhelming performances have seen manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer come under increased pressure in recent weeks, and now his preparations for their upcoming encounter at the King Power Stadium have taken a significant blow.
According to BBC Sport reporter Simon Stone, South American pair Cavani and Fred are unlikely to feature against the Foxes due to the late final game on international duty.
He tweeted: “Along with others, Man Utd expecting Fred and Edinson Cavani to play in all three South American WC qualifiers, first one overnight, third 0130 kick-off BST next Friday morning, so little chance of them being involved at Leicester the following day.”
Brazil are set to face Uruguay on Friday with a 1:30 am kick-off (BST), and the short turnaround between that match and United’s Saturday fixture at 3 pm, means Fred and Cavani are unlikely to be ready to play.
News that the duo are likely to miss what is set to be a tricky game in the Midlands will surely leave Solskjaer feeling gutted.
Cristiano Ronaldo may have been signed and Marcus Rashford is on the comeback trail but he remains an important part of the furniture, especially on the substitute’s bench.
Meanwhile, Fred has continued to play a pivotal part for the 20-time English champions in the current campaign, starting six of their seven top-flight fixtures to date.
Therefore, their expected absence will be a significant blow to United upon the resumption of domestic football, and Solskjaer will be hoping his side can get back to winning ways without two key players.