'Spurs miss Kane, we miss many others'
Mourinho brushes away injury concerns, says Shaw still has a future under him
Jose Mourinho could see what was about to come his way before his press conference ahead of today's visit of Mauricio Pochettino's Tottenham Hotspur began.
So, the wily Manchester United manager made sure no one would ask him the question.
It, being, of course, the injury to Spurs striker Harry Kane.
The Portuguese said: "I know the question, so I don't need the question, I'll answer.
"I don't speak about injured players, so don't ask me about Harry Kane, because to speak about Kane I have to speak about (Zlatan) Ibrahimovic, (Paul) Pogba, (Marcos) Rojo, (Michael) Carrick so I don't speak. Next question."
Mourinho then went on to discuss another player who has been missing from first-team action, despite returning to full fitness.
SHAW UNDER SCRUTINY
In Pochettino's new autobiography, published this week, Luke Shaw is quoted as saying he would relish the opportunity to play for his former Southampton manager again in the future.
Those comments, allied with his frustrating and injury-ravaged time under Mourinho at Old Trafford, have led to speculation that Shaw will find himself surplus to requirements under the United manager.
But Mourinho said that while it will be difficult for Shaw, he does have a future under him.
"I would be very disappointed if his words were different," Mourinho said.
"I am always disappointed when a player, because he has a new manager, the new manager becomes the best and the old manager becomes very bad, and football is full of examples of lack of character.
"Luke Shaw was just honest. The manager who helped him come to the first team, developed him in the best moment of his career, is the manager he doesn't forget."
The 54-year-old Mourinho added that the road back to a regular first-team spot would be tough for the 22-year-old.
"He has a future here, but the situation is not easy because he comes from injury after injury after injury," he said.
"He needs two, three, four, five or six matches in a row to play, to make mistakes, to get conditioned, to get match fitness and I cannot give him that.
"If he were a central midfielder then yes, because we have only two (available at the moment) but, at left back, we have so many options, so the situation is not easy. But he is in the squad, he works and maybe the opportunity comes."
Meanwhile, Ander Herrera is keen to make "a big statement" about their EPL title prospects with a victory over title rivals Tottenham.
The win will also end a two-game winless streak for United, after a goalless draw at Liverpool was followed by a shock 2-1 defeat by Huddersfield Town, leaving United with a five-point gap to make up on league leaders Manchester City.
"It's going to be very, very difficult, but we play at home in front of our fans," United midfielder Herrera said.
"Tottenham are direct rivals every season. In the last two or three years, they have improved a lot and they are contenders for everything; the Champions League, the Premier League and for both cups.
"They are very organised, they play really good football and they have players who can score... Even their fullbacks are very offensive. It will be a big statement if we beat them." - WIRE SERVICES