Antonio Valencia provides injury update ahead of Manchester derby

by Leo Nieboer

Antonio Valencia has provided an injury update after missing out on Manchester United’s 2-0 win over Burnley in the Premier League, posting a fixture of himself working hard in the gym.

The Ecuadorian, an instrumental force at right back this season, was absent from the squad that made the trip to Turf Moor after playing a full 120 minutes against Anderlecht just a few days before, with Ashley Young occupying the role instead.

Jose Mourinho did note earlier this month that Valencia, for all his energy and power, would not be able to feature in every game between now and the end of the season.

The 31-year-old took to Instagram to reassure supporters that he was continuing to work hard ahead of the Manchester derby on Thursday.

“Congratulations to all my teammates, we are still working,” the 31-year-old wrote.

“Life is full of surprises if you do not risk doing things you will not know what kind of surprise awaits you.

“Be strong so that no one makes you cry, noble so they do not make you suffer and so humble that everyone wants to be with you.”

Not many Man United players have experienced the vicissitudes of a frantic, pressurised, injury hit, staggering end-of-season crescendo at the highest level before, but Valencia is one of them.

He will know better than most that the dynamic changes from here onwards: every game is a cup final; one goal can be enough; one mistake can also be enough. The boundaries are more refined, sharper and indeed consequential.

Mourinho – and United supporters all around the world – will just hope that the Ecuadorian can be involved as much as possible during this period.

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