Alexis Sanchez and Jesse Lingard are both in contention to start for Manchester United at Bournemouth on Saturday after returning to full fitness following injuries.
Sanchez has been struggling with an abductor injury and has been reduced to substitute appearances against Newcastle and Chelsea in recent weeks, while Lingard has been battling to overcome a groin injury.
Both were on the bench for United’s 2-1 win over Everton last Sunday – Lingard came on in the 95th minute – but boss Jose Mourinho admitted neither were fully fit.
Mourinho said: “Jesse [Lingard] and Alexis [Sanchez] are in a much better position than last week because last week was an effort from them to be available to help the team.
“But now it is a different story. Now, Alexis and Lingard after one good week with the team, they are ready to play, really.”
Meanwhile, Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe insists United remain the favourites, despite his side’s impressive start to the season.
The Cherries have won nine of their 13 matches in all competitions, including three of the last four in the Premier League, and Howe’s team are sixth in the table, two places and three points in front of United.
When asked if his side are favourites, he said: “I wouldn’t agree with that. Every time you play Manchester United as Bournemouth, Manchester United are favourites for the game.
“Players need to know to get anything out of the game, they are going to have to excel, perhaps even above what we have done this season, to get a positive result. That’s my message to the players. Whenever you play the elite teams, the big guns, you have to outperform your levels.
“You have to hit your very top to get a result. We have found that before, you can’t play below your best and expect to win. The challenge is to win and go harder.”
Bournemouth captain Simon Francis is a doubt. The defender is nursing a slight groin problem following the Carabao Cup win over Norwich in midweek. A scan on the injury has shown no serious damage and Howe will make a late decision on his fitness.
Joshua King remains absent. The Norwegian forward has missed the last two games with an ankle injury and will not be ready to return against his former club.
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