Erik ‘optimistic’ of duo returning for Bournemouth clash

Monday 02 January 2023 13:30

Erik ten Hag is “optimistic” of having both Lisandro Martinez and Scott McTominay available to return to the squad for Manchester United’s meeting with Bournemouth on Tuesday.

Martinez recently returned to Carrington from his successful World Cup campaign with Argentina, while McTominay has been dealing with an illness over the festive period. 

The latter featured in our first game back from the mid-season break, the Carabao Cup win over Burnley on 21 December, but neither have played in the Premier League since its resumption. 

Having therefore missed wins over Nottingham Forest and, most recently, Wolves, the pair could return for Tuesday evening’s game against the Cherries at Old Trafford, according to Ten Hag.

Both Martinez and McTominay could play in the Premier League for the first time since the restart on Tuesday.
“We have to see,” Erik responded to reporters at his pre-match press conference, when asked if he expects the duo to be back for the Bournemouth game. 

“Both were training yesterday and today, so I am quite optimistic about [them] returning to the squad, both of them.”

During the meeting with the media, conducted in the immediate aftermath of the New Year’s Eve win at Molineux, Erik was was also asked for an update on full-back Diogo Dalot, who has been back in training but absent from United’s games since his World Cup return, due to an injury picked up at the tournament.

“Diogo Dalot also, he is making good progress,” Ten Hag explained. 

“But we don’t want to take risks with anyone because we know there are many games to come and we need a full squad to cover all the games.”

The Bournemouth match is United’s first of four to come in a 12-day period – all at Old Trafford – that will see us play in three different competitions. 

Ten Hag's Bournemouth press conference: Part one Video

Ten Hag's Bournemouth press conference: Part one

Erik provides the latest United team news ahead of the Bournemouth game, in the first section of his press conference...


Cherries head coach Gary O’Neil was without several senior players for their 2-0 loss to Crystal Palace on Saturday, with David Brooks, Ryan Fredericks, Neto, Junior Stanislas and Marcus Tavernier all absent. 

It is unknown as of yet whether any of the aforementioned players will be available for the trip to Old Trafford. 

Midfielder Philip Billing’s status is also unclear for the M16 fixture, after he was forced off in the first half of that New Year’s Eve clash with a hip problem. No Bournemouth player has scored more goals than the Dane’s four so far this season.