Man United goalkeeper David De Gea ruled out of FC Midtjylland game
MANCHESTER -- David De Gea has been ruled out of Manchester United's Europa League round-of-32 second leg match against FC Midtjylland on Thursday, while Chris Smalling faces a battle to be fit.
At his news conference on Wednesday, United boss Louis van Gaal confirmed that De Gea, who suffered a knee injury in the warmup before last week's 2-1 defeat in the first leg, would miss the return match at Old Trafford.
Smalling, meanwhile, has suffered an unspecified injury, reported to be to a shoulder problem, after playing 90 minutes in the 3-0 win at Shrewsbury Town in the FA Cup on Monday night.
The England defender collided with an advertising hoarding during the game and needs to be assessed.
When asked whether De Gea and Smalling would be fit for the game, Van Gaal said: "I was hoping for that, but De Gea shall not be involved."
United had more encouraging fitness news as Antonio Valencia, Marcos Rojo and Adnan Januzaj all returned to first-team training on Thursday, but Rojo is the only one with a chance of featuring against Midtjylland.
"Valencia is not available for selection, neither is [the cup-tied] Januzaj, but they are close," Van Gaal said. "Rojo can only come in for 20 minutes maybe."
Cameron Borthwick-Jackson and Jesse Lingard could also be in need of a rest.
Van Gaal said: "We shall do everything to recover the players. A lot of players were part of the group who played the match against Shrewsbury Town. We have to wait and see because we want to start with our strongest team."
Arindam is ESPN FC's Manchester United correspondent. Follow him on Twitter @ARejSport.