But while speaking to the media on Friday morning at the Aon Training Complex, the manager explained that the last few training sessions before Sunday’s Premier League clash could deliver more encouraging news on the injury front.
“I hope that between now and tomorrow’s training session we can have some positive news. But the situation is not easy,”admitted Mourinho.
“The latest is to tell you that in Valencia only De Gea and Matic were available to play and didn’t travel by decision. Apart from that, the players that didn’t travel they were not fit to play in Valencia. All of them, they had injuries and they were not ready. All of them, they didn’t train yesterday again.
“Today there will be a little – I don’t want to say test – but a little introduction to training to see the answer, to see the adaptation and to see that we can increase a little bit tomorrow to have them available for Sunday. It’s better not to say for sure but I hope that some will be… let’s say available. But for sure, some will not be.”The manager explained that some of the injured players were closer to a return than others.
“The ones that played in Valencia are on recovery sessions. The ones that are not fit are training. Some are not even training. Others are training but very limited, to see if the evolution comes step by step in the way they are ready to play.“
More positively, Matic and De Gea, two men who have made a high number of appearances under Mourinho, head into Sunday’s big match after a week of rest.
“Both had a reason to stay [and not travel to Valencia],” stressed the boss.
“De Gea has played every minute and needed a mental rest. Matic has played every minute and needed a physical rest.”
England centre-back Joe Gomez fractured his left ankle during the Merseysiders’ 3-1 win at Burnley earlier this month, while Joel Matip suffered a broken collarbone during the 1-0 win over Napoli at Anfield in midweek. Young right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold is also due to miss out with an ankle complaint picked up during the same Champions League game.