Champions League: Mourinho wants no excuses on plastic pitch against Young Boys

Manchester United kickstart their Champions League campaign in Switzerland tonight.

United's elder statesman, 33-year-old Antonio Valencia was given the night off to protect his brittle bones and ageing joints with Mourinho saying: "We decided not to bring Antonio Valencia because his knee is not a knee that needs an artificial pitch".

"We have Lukaku, Rashford, Mata, Alexis, Martial - they all can not play together, so try to be a little bit happy for the ones that are playing and not be critical of the ones that are not".

The last time United played in the Champions League, Pogba could not get in the team: Last season's round-of-16 second leg saw Mourinho go with Scott McTominay instead.

Last season's reverse did not prevent the Reds from progressing to the knockout rounds, though.

He said after the match: "Dalot did very well".

The 20-year-old managed just one Manchester United start, playing a total of 122 Premier League minutes, before being England's match-winner twice during the worldwide break.

"We are improving, we found a certain balance in the team, especially in the competitive attitude", the manager said.

The Champions League match between Young Boys and Manchester United will be broadcast live on B/R Live.

Dalot has also featured in the Champions League before, having previously played against Liverpool at Anfield with former club Porto, from whom he was bought for £19million on a five-year contract.

"We managed to win two hard away matches which was important for us, so I'm happy but I was happy after the Tottenham defeat. with numerous things that I saw".

Young players often have that fearless mentality when they are first thrust into the first-team and that most certainly appeared to be the case with Dalot as he made an electrifying start to the game.

"So I think he's in the flawless spot and he's getting enough games to continue his development".

"These players have the quality to play on this surface, they have speed and great technique, so it won't be a problem for the great players they have".

  • Steve Townsend