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Paul Pogba has been named in Manchester United’s preliminary squad to face Sevilla in the second leg of their UEFA Champions League round-of-16 clash against Sevilla on Tuesday.
The France international missed Saturday’s 2-1 win over north-west rivals Liverpool due to a thigh injury, but Samuel Luckhurst of the Manchester Evening News confirmed he was back in the squad ahead of Tuesday.
Manager Jose Mourinho was unsure whether his midfielder would still make the matchday squad against Sevilla at his pre-match press conference on Monday: “He trained a little bit after you left. I don’t know if he will be fit for tomorrow yet.”
The Red Devils welcome Vincenzo Montella’s side to Old Trafford after drawing 0-0 in their trip to Spain, where Pogba came on as an early substitute for Ander Herrera to feature alongside academy product Scott McTominay and Nemanja Matic.
McTominay impressed not for the first time this season in a 90-minute outing against Liverpool on Saturday, and PhysioRoom.com gave an update on some of United’s other fitness issuies prior to the Sevilla showdown:
Martial will return for United on Tuesday while Mourinho looks set to make a late call on Pogba. Herrera, Jones, Blind and Rojo remain out. Ibrahimovic is training with the main group. #MUFC
Pogba has been injured for a total of 16 games this season, per Transfermarkt, but United lost only three of those fixtures—Manchester City at home, Chelsea away and Huddersfield Town away, a loss every 5.2 games.
That’s compared with five losses in the 21 starts he’s made across all competitions, pointing to an inferior loss ratio of one defeat every 4.3 games.
Mourinho also mentioned at the end of Monday’s press conference that Pogba’s injury on Friday was close to being avoided altogether, via Goal:
Jose Mourinho could have prevented Paul Pogba’s injury if he had halted training just one minute earlier … #MUFC https://t.co/Je3wulj3Jn
Despite the evidence suggesting United lose more often with Pogba starting than they do when he’s out of the team, Mourinho will undoubtedly want the club’s record signing at his disposal against Sevilla.