Football

Mourinho fears losing Fellaini

Jose Mourinho admitted yesterday that he is getting more anxious over the prospect of losing Marouane Fellaini, as the big Belgian's contract talks with Manchester United drag on.

The Red Devils manager, speaking ahead of tonight's English Premier League match against Brighton, said that he is not involved in Fellaini's contract renewal talks.

English Premier League
MAN UNITED BRIGHTON

The 30-year-old midfielder is understood to want a longer-term contract than the one offered. In September, he had rejected what was believed to be a two-year extension.

Since then, talks appear to have stalled. In January, Fellaini will be free to talk to foreign clubs as he enters the final six months of his current deal.

"Yes," said Mourinho when asked if he is worried at the prospect of losing Fellaini.

"It is a discussion between the player and the board. I'm not involved in contracts... And I respect both.

"I respect the player because he has the right to decide his future and I respect the board because the decisions and the discussions are under control.

"So I just wait, wishing they will have an understanding but it's out of my control."

Turkey's Besiktas, Fenerbahce and Galatasaray are understood to be prepared to offer terms over four years.

Meanwhile, Mourinho has called on the club's supporters to be patient as they attempt to close an eight-point gap on leaders Manchester City.

He will be without defenders Eric Bailly and Phil Jones, who are both injured.

Tonight's opposition, ninth-placed Brighton, are unbeaten in five EPL matches and manager Chris Hughton is hoping his side can inflict a first home defeat on Manchester United since September last year, when Manchester City won 2-1.

Said Hughton: "We can beat them, but we need to play to a very high level and get a bit of luck." - WIRE SERVICES

Football