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Mourinho to ration Dalot appearances for Manchester United

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Jose Mourinho indicated Friday that he will ration Diogo Dalot ’ s Manchester United appearances despite an impressive midweek debut in the Champions League.Mourinho declared that Dalot , 19 , was the best young full- back in Europe after signing him from Porto for £ 19 million ( $ 25 million ) in June .

The right- back ’ s debut was delayed while he recovered from knee surgery but he looked assured as he made his first appearance for the club on Wednesday in a 3 – 0 Champions League victory over Swiss club Young Boys .

Despite that strong display , Mourinho said he would leave the teenager out of his line – up to face Wolves in the Premier League on Saturday , instead selecting him for Tuesday ’ s League Cup third – round home tie against Championship side Derby .
Antonio Valencia is expected to return in the right- back role , having been rested for the midweek win over the Swiss champions .

The manager explained that Dalot needs time to adjust to life at United in order to realise his potential .

“ I want him in this process of adaptation to play totally fresh , so he ’ s not playing tomorrow , he plays Tuesday again, ” said Mourinho.

“ To play for Manchester United is difficult enough for a kid of 19 years old coming from another country and after an important injury and surgery. That is difficult enough , he doesn ’ t need to face more difficulty .

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“ But he showed on Wednesday , for the ones that don’ t know him very , very well he is not a player to be here just for development . He is a player to be here to compete for positions ( in the team ) . He ’ s a very good player . ”

– United find form –

United go into the Wolves game on a run of three straight victories , conceding only one goal in the process .

Mourinho has fielded a central defensive partnership of Chris Smalling and Victor Lindelof in each of those three wins , having started the season with Eric Bailly playing alongside the Sweden international.

However , the manager has rejected the suggestion that Smalling and Lindelof are now his first – choice centre – back pairing , or that they should take all the credit for the defensive record .

“ I think the team is resolving the defensive problems better than before, ” he said . “ I don’ t want to say was Bailly or ( Phil ) Jones ( before) and that it is now Smalling or Lindelof.

“ I think the team is more compact , more solid . The spirit , the cooperation, the empathy , the communication — all of that improve the team . ”

Mourinho’ s agent , Jorge Mendes , has strong links with Saturday ’ s opponents Wolves , where he works as an adviser to Chinese owners Fosun — and he also represents their Portuguese manager Nuno Espirito Santo .

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The closeness of Mendes ’ involvement at Molineux prompted the English Football League to investigate the set -up last season , although it was found to comply with the body ’ s rules.

Asked if he spoke to Mendes about Wolves , Mourinho said : “ No , I haven ’ t spoken with him for quite a long time to be honest, but when we speak we don’ t speak about my job or his job . He ’ s my agent and that ’ s it .

“ But I think the work being done at Wolves is good because is not just about Portuguese influence , a Portuguese manager , staff and players . It is also about getting the right ones and I think they’ ve got good young players and got also good experienced , stable players . ”

( AFP )

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