Before the derby, Kobbie Mainoo arrived at Old Trafford. Before the derby, Kobbie Mainoo arrived at Old Trafford. (Photo courtesy of Getty Images, Matthew Peters/Manchester United) For the first time this season, Kobbie Mainoo has arrived at Old Trafford as a member of the Manchester United team ahead of their match against Manchester City. Mainoo sustained an ankle injury during the July friendly versus Real Madrid, and has missed the entire season. He was seen crutching out of the Texas NRG Stadium following his collision with Brazilian forward Rodrygo.
Following a lengthy spell on the sidelines, Mainoo returned to training at the start of October and got his first minutes back on the pitch during United under-19s UEFA Youth League defeat against FC Copenhagen on Tuesday. The 18-year-old played 45 minutes before a pre-planned substitution
It is now evident that his inclusion in the squad for this afternoon’s derby was the reason behind his exclusion from Travis Binnion’s squad for Friday’s draw at Fulham. But his inclusion is most likely in place of Casemiro, who was not seen this morning entering Old Trafford.
Erik ten Hag acknowledged on Friday that the Brazilian, who suffered a minor injury while away on international duty earlier this month, was running out of time to be ready for the 191st Manchester Derby. Despite having participated in training since Monday, it appears that he was not fully present. United, who defeated Copenhagen 1-0 on Tuesday, enters the derby riding a three-game winning streak. That evening, Andre Onana saved a penalty kick in added time, but Harry Maguire scored the game’s lone goal. They take on a City team that has triumphed in their previous two games following Rodri’s three-game suspension. However, Manuel Akanji won’t be available because he was sent off against Brighton last weekend.