Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal was giving nothing away over his selection plans for his side's Champions League curtain raiser against PSV Eindhoven. With captain Wayne Rooney missing the trip to Netherlands with a knock, the same injury that ruled him out of the 3-1 win over Liverpool on Saturday 12 September, there is a void to be filled up front.
Following his sensational solo effort against United's arch rivals, after coming off the substitutes' bench, many are clamouring for deadline day signing Anthony Martial to be given his first full start against the Dutch champions on 15 September.
But Van Gaal remained coy when asked about the Frenchman's chances, telling a press conference: "We've had one light training session since the match [vs Liverpool]," United's official website reports. "Martial's impression so far is good."
With Marouane Fellaini and James Wilson also among the travelling squad, Van Gaal has one or two options, with Memphis Depay also vying for a starting role against his former club. The 21-year-old has started in each of United's seven games this season but was hauled off at half-time in Saturday's showdown with Liverpool at Old Trafford.
After a drab goalless first half, the introduction of Ashley Young for the Dutchman saw United step up their game dramatically and see out a 3-1 win. But the Netherlands international is eager to make an impact against his former employers.
"I played 10 years for PSV before joining United," Depay said alongside Van Gaal in a pre-match press conference. "So it's a special feeling for me to see my old teammates again and play against them. I learned so much at PSV. But the competition is on a different level in the English Premier League. So I have to learn again at United."
When asked about his manager's decision to take him off at half-time against Liverpool, he added: "My reaction was good. I thought about it and I will work on it in training to improve."
Van Gaal, meanwhile, reiterated that supporters must be patient with Depay, insisting consistency does not develop overnight for young players. "There is a huge rhythm in the Premier League and he has to adapt," he said. "He will improve, I think. He has played every game so far. You have to accept that players of 21 years old are not consistent."