Blog Post, Clubs, Liverpool, Manchester United, UEFA Champions League

Jose Mourinho explains the role he envisions for Zlatan Ibrahimovic coming off the bench for Man United against Basel.
Craig Burley says the matches preceding the Manchester Derby are key for Man United if they want to challenge City for the title.
Jose Mourinho explains how playing Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial together affects Man United’s defensive shape.
Following Paul Pogba’s display in his return for Man United, the FC crew debate how much he dictates United’s attack.

Thursday’s latest stories from the world of football in ESPN FC’s What’s Trending …

MAN UNITED: Jose Mourinho says Manchester United were made to pay for not capitalising on a “perfect” first-half performance after Basel scored a late winner at St Jakob-Park but refused to blame Daley Blind for his role in the Swiss side’s winner.

– Zlatan Ibrahimovic became the first player to represent seven different clubs in the Champions League when he came on against Basel.

– Rio Ferdinand accused Manchester United of “lacking professionalism” as they slumped to a 1-0 loss at Basel in the Champions League.

– Juan Mata has told ESPN FC he is open to prolonging his stay at Old Trafford.

CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Here’s what the teams need to do to seal progress to the knockout stages of the Champions League with one game left to play.

– With the penultimate matches in the group stage over, John Brewin picks the best Champions League XI — with Neymar in after his super performance.

– Igor Akinfeev kept his first Champions League clean sheet in more than 11 years as CSKA Moscow beat Benfica 2-0 on Wednesday.

BAYERN MUNICH: Bayern supporters protested Anderlecht’s ticket prices by launching bundles of fake money on the pitch during their side’s 2-1 Champions League win at the Constant Vanden Stock stadium on Wednesday.

– Jupp Heynckes paid tribute to in-form goalkeeper Sven Ulreich’s performance, but bemoaned injuries to Thiago Alcantara and Arjen Robben in Wednesday’s 2-1 win at Anderlecht.

– Here’s five memorable meetings to whet the appetite before Saturday’s true Klassiker between Bayern Munich and Borussia Monchengladbach.

BARCELONA: Ernesto Valverde said he left Lionel Messi on the bench against Juventus to give him a breather as Barcelona booked their place in the Champions League knockout rounds on Wednesday.

WATCH: Why Barcelona are taking Valencia so seriously

REAL MADRID: Cristiano Ronaldo accused the media of twisting his words and declined to be interviewed after scoring twice to set yet another record in Tuesday’s 6-0 Champions League Group H win at Apoel Nicosia.

– For most of the past decade, the Premier League’s best have left for Real Madrid and Barcelona. Are Philippe Coutinho and Eden Hazard next in line?

WATCH: Sid Lowe says Real Madrid aren’t done yet

CHELSEA: Antonio Conte revealed his mind had already turned to devising a tactical game plan to face Liverpool after watching Chelsea demolish 10-man Qarabag 4-0 in Baku to book their place in the Champions League knockout stage.

LIVERPOOL: Steven Gerrard says that he has been pleased with the return of the “magnificent” Rhian Brewster after his heroics on the international stage.

– The visit of Chelsea will tell us plenty about Liverpool’s progress under Jurgen Klopp and whether it is in danger of slipping into reverse, writes Mark Ogden.

MAN CITY: Yaya Toure says manager Pep Guardiola will not allow Manchester City to be complacent after he tore into his players in the dressing room following the 1-0 victory over Feyenoord on Tuesday.

WATCH: Who’s better: PSG or Manchester City?

PSG: Unai Emery was delighted by his players’ recovery from Celtic’s opener as they set a new record for the number of goals scored in the Champions League group stage in a 7-1 win on Wednesday.

Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers claims their 7-1 Champions League defeat by PSG brought more encouragement than their seven-goal thrashing by Barcelona last season.

– Celtic’s Moussa Dembele said the Champions League encounter with PSG had been “good for two minutes” as his side were thrashed 7-1.

Transfer Talk: PSG keen on adding Alexis Sanchez, loaning Julian Draxler to Liverpool

ARSENAL: Danny Welbeck is set to make his first start in five weeks when Arsenal play Cologne on Thursday, with Arsene Wenger confident the injury-prone forward can still make England’s World Cup squad.

WATCH: Arsene Wenger says Arsenal will mix youth and experience in the Europa League

Follow @ESPNFC on Twitter to keep up with the latest football updates.


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