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Who is next on Jose Mourinho's chop list at Man Utd?

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Depay not good enough to play for Man Utd
Depay not good enough to play for Man Utd

Jose Mourinho spent a bulk of last summer off-loading unwanted players from the Manchester United squad he inherited from Louis van Gaal - and he is already preparing for another round of culls in the January transfer window.

We are just a few weeks away from another round of spending from the Premier League giants and if Mourinho is looking to free up space in his United squad for fresh arrivals, these are the high profile names likely to be on his chop list:

MEMPHIS DEPAY

Status: Fallen star in need of a fresh start.

After playing just minutes of Premier League football this season, Depay has been given a huge hint that his fortunes at United are not likely to improve that he is working under boss Jose Mourinho.

Handed the celebrated United No.7 jersey after his big-money move from PSV Eindhoven in the summer of 2015, his manager Louis van Gaal was convinced he had signed a player who could provide a spark in his team, but this Dutch wonder kid has been a huge letdown.

Verdict: With his confidence shattered, the only option for Depay appears to be a move away from United, but he may have to take a pay cut to kick-start his career.

PHIL JONES
Status: Initial high hopes have been dashed.

Legendary United manager Alex Ferguson may have been trying to bolster the confidence of this young English defender when he declared he could be the “best United player ever” back in 2013, but Jones has not lived up to that billing in the years since.

Injuries and high profile errors have seen his fellow Englishmen Chris Smalling and Luke Shaw move clear of him in the United pecking order and the speculation that he had been put up for sale by Mourinho last summer was not without foundation.

Verdict: Like Wes Brown and Jonny Evans before him, Jones looks destined to a defender who didn’t quite realise the potential he appeared to have at United.

MAROUANE FELLAINI

Status: How is he still at Man Utd?

Okay, we are all struggling to answer the question above, but there is a sense that Jose Mourinho has come to the conclusion that the cumbersome Belgian has no place in his team after handing him some early starts this season.

David Moyes and Louis van Gaal had an unhealthy devotion to a player who has appeared to a majority neutral observers to be woefully short of the standards required to play in United’s midfield and after his efforts in his side’s woeful 3-1 defeat at Watford last month, he better get used to his role as a bench warmer at Old Trafford.

Verdict: A fluid and free flowing United side will not emerge if Fellaini is in their set-up. His less than desirable attributes would be better suited in lower league football.

MATTEO DARMIAN

Status: Yes he is still a Man Utd player.

This Italian defender was a key figure in Louis van Gaal’s Man Utd set-up last season, but he has played just once under Jose Mourinho and was another who was offered for sale in last summer’s transfer window.

Mourinho appeared to make a swift decision to sideline this 26-year-old who cost around €14.5m, but a deal to get him off the United wage bill ahead of the transfer deadline in August was not completed.

Verdict: A return to Italian football seems likely for a defender who struggled to make his mark in the Premier League, with Inter Milan believed to be close to sealing a deal.

MARCOS ROJO

Status: Earning too much to be tempted to leave.

This Argentine international arrived at United amid plenty of fanfare, but his performances on the pitch have not justified his reported €80,000-per-week basic wages package.

United will struggle to get Rojo off their wage bill unless he is willing to take a pay cut and with a huge contract that runs until 2019, there is no great rush for him to move on.

Verdict: He has not played a minute of Premier League football this season, but has still collected around €635,000 in pre-tax wages since the start of August. Would you walk away from that kind of deal?

MORGAN SCHNEIDERLIN

Status: Well down Mourinho’s midfield pecking order

This France international appeared to be a good fit for United when he was signed from Southampton in the summer of 2015, but he has not started a Premier League game this season and is behind Paul Pogba, Juan Mata, Michael Carrick, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and even Fellaini in Mourinho’s plans.

A good player and a character who will want to play matches, Schneiderlin may not be quite up to the standards required to shine at United, but he would be a fine signing for a rival Premier League club.

Verdict: Everton have been strongly linked with a bid to sign Schneiderlin and by the time he gets to January 1st, he will probably have concluded he needs to move on.