Erik ten Hag admits that Manchester United must wait 24 hours to learn how serious Antony ‘s injury is and whether he’ll be able to feature in next week’s huge FA Cup final.
The Brazilian, 23, went down in agony midway through the first half of the Red Devils’ resounding 4-1 win against Chelsea on Thursday after a lunging but fair challenge by Chelsea defender Trevoh Chalobah. Antony was promptly stretchered off, as he burst into tears while being treated by medical staff and subbed off for Marcus Rashford.
United’s grudge FA Cup final clash with treble-chasing rivals Manchester City is just around the corner and left-back Luke Shaw also came off at half-time on Thursday to put his own spot in doubt alongside Antony. Post-match, Red Devils boss Ten Hag was asked to provide and update on the injured duo and told Sky Sports : “It’s difficult to say. Let’s wait for 24 hours and then we’ll know more.”
The pair will be even bigger doubts for this Sunday’s Premier League finale at home to Fulham. United have, however, already confirmed a top-four finish which means that they’ll be playing in the Champions League next season and Ten Hag can afford to rest players.
Speaking about the club’s return to the top table of European football, the United manager added: “This club belongs in the Champions League. It’s not easy in the Premier League so a lot compete for that. It’s massive when you get it done. We wanted to win. We showed the winning attitude.
“Chelsea have outstanding players but in the counter attacks we were really good, really dangerous. We scored four in the end. We should’ve scored more but they could score as well. Our defence was better second half. First half we had problems between the lines.
“They played without pressure, could go forward. You have to strike them and take advantage of the spaces you get and we didn’t always. Second goal was late in the first half and could’ve been earlier. Still we can be third in the league. It’s important to keep focus, not getting injuries as well. But also get a home record. It’s going to be an important game, we want to win that game.”
Goalscorer Bruno Fernandes had a similar verdict, insisting that the Red Devils can do better than merely winning one trophy – the Carabao Cup – and finishing inside the top four. “It’s decent, it’s not perfect because we want more,” Fernandes affirmed. “For what we did this season it’s perfect.
“We get the trophy which was our goal after seeing we couldn’t get the Premier League. Now it’s about finishing the league well and going to win FA Cup.” The Portuguese midfielder went on to say: “We know it’s really important here. We know if we win it we stop the option for Manchester City getting the treble but for us it’s about getting another trophy.”