Manchester United are set to be without five players for the Champions League visit of CSKA Moscow, including midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin. The France international played the full 90 minutes of the goalless draw with Crystal Palace but missed United's final training session before the club's fourth group game due to personal reasons.
Antonio Valencia, Paddy McNair and James Wilson – who all missed the stalemate at Selhurst Park – all sat out the session, as did long-term injury absentee Luke Shaw is not expected back until 2016. Phil Jones and Memphis Depay are both doubtful too after training away from the main group.
Following a poor run of form, Depay has not featured in three of United's last five games and was left out of the squad entirely for the game at Palace after picking up an injury in the Capital One Cup loss to Middlesbrough. The 21-year-old's reputation has also been damaged by his omission from the Netherlands squad for the upcoming international double-header but United manager Louis van Gaal continues to stand by the Dutch youngster.
"I have said he is the greatest talent of his age but he is only 21 and you cannot expect consistency. He is at a stage of his career where he must adapt to many things," he said according to the Manchester Evening News. "I'm convinced he's coming back maybe stronger than before but we have to give him time, like we will with Martial when he is a little bit lower in his shape."
United have failed to score in their last three games in all competitions, last finding the net through Anthony Martial's header in the 1-1 draw with CSKA on 21 October. The young striker has been seldom used through the middle, with his recent appearance starting from the left, during the early months of his career at Old Trafford and Van Gaal is not yet ready revert him to his favoured position.
"I'm always thinking in the team's benefit and not in the benefit of one player," the United boss added. "I have said I have to make all the decisions around the game plan and the opponent, so it's not I have said left wing is his best position, but he can play in three positions in his eyes - left, striker and number 10. I think his best position may be the striker's position."