JOSE MOURINHO has hinted that Zlatan Ibrahimovic will be one of three first-team stars ready to return for United’s hectic Christmas schedule.
The Swede hasn’t featured for the Red Devils since he tore his anterior cruciate ligaments against Anderlecht in April.
PA:Press Association Zlatan Ibrahimovic hasn’t featured for Manchester United since April
But the veterans recovery time has been remarkable and he recently stepped up his training schedule with the first-team squad.
He isn’t the only name edging closing on a return to action with Paul Pogba and Marcos Rojo also enduring lengthy spells on the sidelines.
Pogba, United’s most expensive signing, picked up a hamstring injury in September whilst Rojo has also been out of action since April.
And Mourinho remains upbeat over their recoveries as he looks towards the festive period.
Rex Features Manchester United desperately missed Paul Pogba’s presence in the defeat at Chelsea Rex Features Marcos Rojo has also been sidelined since April with a cruciate ligament injury
Speaking to MUTV, he said: “We have the group of players which are the ones that we hope will recover as soon as possible.
“They have to work every day but they are in a good position now. Pogba, Ibra, Rojo, Fellaini.
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“They are in good positions so I think we can go into this part of the season, the Christmas period, and after, in a strong position.”
United head into the international break on the back of a 1-0 defeat at title rivals Chelsea.
Getty – Contributor Jose Mourinho was upbeat over the injuries of his star players ahead of the international break Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte speak about the the lack of a handshake after the Chelsea v Manchester United match
And the Portuguese gaffer wants to use the time to give some players much-needed time off.
He added: “The international break means the majority of the players fly now from London to their countries.
“They all disappear and then we have a couple who aren’t selected for their national team, like Smalling and Herrera and they really deserve, after so many matches, to have a week off which I’m going to give them.”
Manchester United star Zlatan Ibrahimovic returns to his homeland to hand former club Malmo the Swedish league title