Manchester United boss José Mourinho said he was happy with his rotated side’s performance as they played out a goalless draw with Southampton on Wednesday night.
Sergio Romero saved an early penalty from Manolo Gabbiadini after Eric Bailly had been adjudged to have handled the ball, although replays subsequently showed that the Ivorian had committed the act outside the box.
The Argentine, deputising for David de Gea in goal, proceeded to make several good saves to keep the Reds in the encounter, while Anthony Martial struck the post for United in the second half. However, a breakthrough never came and both sides shared the spoils at St Mary’s.
Speaking to Sky Sports afterwards, Mourinho reflected on his side’s performance, saying that they gave him food for thought in terms of selection for next week’s Europa League final against Ajax in Stockholm.
I think we played a good game against a good team, a team that tried to win because they try to finish well and will probably finish eighth and I think we did more than okay. All of them gave me positive feelings.
Of course, Sergio [Romero] had a very good performance, I’d say more than very good, he made a couple of great saves. The team was not perfect but I think the players individually gave me good things, they showed a great attitude and they showed me they want to be in the final.
They showed me they want to be an option and they gave everything they have but we still have the Sunday match.
The United boss also spoke about David de Gea’s future, as well as the goalkeeping depth at the club:
We have three amazing goalkeepers. Two are top in the world and one will be. We have the Argentina national team goalkeeper [Romero] and the Spanish national team goalkeeper [David De Gea], two of the best countries in the world with good traditions of goalkeeping.
We have these two guys and they are phenomenal and I keep saying the Portuguese kid [Joel Pereira] is a very good goalkeeper so in relation to that we’re in safe gloves. I’m so pleased with that and I’m so pleased with the relationship they have between them. They all motivate each other which shows a really fantastic spirit.
[When will De Gea play again?] I think the first match against LA Galaxy in pre-season in Los Angeles. I hope to play Joel against Crystal Palace and I hope to play Sergio in the final and hopefully, we don’t have problems with these two keepers. David is top in the world and obviously, we want to keep the top [keeper] in the world.
Finally, Mourinho hinted at a youthful side for United’s final Premier League game of the season at home to Crystal Palace:
Sunday will be a big day for the kids because lots of them are going to play. I hope the crowd enjoys that in spite of it not being a big strong, Man United team and I hope Big Sam shows he’s really a friend and he goes slow and leaves [Christian] Benteke at home!