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Man Utd receive Champions League boost with Atletico Madrid without five players | Football | Sport


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Manchester United have been given a boost ahead of their crucial Champions League tie on Tuesday, with Atletico Madrid set to be without five first-team players. United host Atleti at Old Trafford in the second leg of their last-16 tie following a 1-1 draw in Madrid two weeks ago.

Anthony Elanga’s dramatic late goal sees United head into the match on level pegging, despite being on the back foot for much of the game after Joao Felix’s early strike.

Ralf Rangnick’s side restored confidence by beating Tottenham 3-2 on Saturday, six days after their 4-1 Manchester derby thrashing.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored a wonderful hat-trick at Old Trafford to get the team back on track and Rangnick will now be pleased to see a depleted Atleti squad named by Diego Simeone.

The Spanish side have been dogged by injury problems this season and will be without Sime Vrsaljko, Daniel Wass, Matheus Cunha, Yannick Carrasco and Thomas Lemar for the trip to Old Trafford.

Centre-back Jose Gimenez is included in the travelling squad, but remains a doubt after being substituted in the 2-1 win over Cadiz on Friday due to a calf injury.

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Fernandes missed the game after testing positive for Covid-19 and Rangnick explained on Sunday that the club will be careful not to rush him back too soon.

“I don’t know. We have to be careful with Covid tests,” Rangnick said when asked about Fernandes’ return.

“David [de Gea] was the same. David yesterday was out, he was not supposed to play but then it turned out that his first fast test was false.

“He took another one or two quick tests then a PCR test and that was negative. I only decided in the morning that he was going to play.”

On Shaw, he added: “Luke hopefully will be back in training tomorrow and Bruno we will have to wait and see until Tuesday.

“This will probably be a last-minute race with him.”

McTominay missed the Spurs match with a calf problem but could return against Atleti.

“With Scotty, I hope so but he had some muscular problems with his calf,” Rangnick said.

“That’s why we decided not to play him, because Scotty is quite like Fred, he is only valuable if he can perform with 100 per cent of his physical capacity and rather than playing him at maybe 80 per cent and take the risk that he will be out for Tuesday, we decided to not play him.”

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