Jose Mourinho has confirmed that he will rest players who have accumulated "lots of minutes" in recent weeks when Manchester United travel to the Emirates Stadium to take on Arsenal on Sunday (7 May).
The Portuguese manager has made it clear that winning the Europa League is his main priority over trying to finish in the top four of the Premier League as a way of qualifying for the Champions League next season.
United won the first-leg of their Europa League semi-final against Celta Vigo 1-0 on Thursday (4 May) but Mourinho believes their inability to kill off the tie has given the Spanish outfit a chance to mount a comeback in the second leg. The prospect of the tie still being in the balance will see the Red Devils boss rest few of his players, which could see Ander Herrera and Eric Bailly given a breather against Arsene Wenger's side.
Herrera and Bailly have played the full 90 minutes in seven games over the last 30 days, and with a number of United players suffering injuries in recent weeks, the manager will be keen to avoid further setbacks going into the final weeks of the campaign. Mourinho was handed a boost during the week with defenders Phil Jones and Chris Smalling returning from injury, which will give him options going into the clash at the weekend.
"It's a short result, it could have been better. Seeing Celta's trajectory in the Europa League, they definitely deserve respect for the second leg," Mourinho said after his side's 1-0 win at the Estadio de Balaídos, as quoted on United's official site.
"The players are in accumulation with lots of minutes because we played nine matches in April and now this one, so 10 in four-and-a-half weeks. The players in that accumulation are not going to play this weekend [against Arsenal]," the Portuguese coach added.