Reports have recently emerged that exiled Manchester United midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger has now been barred from playing for the reserve side by manager Jose Mourinho.
The German international hasn’t played a minute in any competition for the first-team this season, while being omitted from the Premier League and Europa League squads and most recently being left out of the team photo. But here’s why….
Schweinsteiger the mercenary
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho put a number of players up for sale in the summer upon his arrival, but Bastian Schweinsteiger was one who refused to leave the club. The former Bayern Munich midfielder endured a debut season to forget under ex-boss Louis van Gaal in 2015/16, struggling with injuries and form, and was deemed surplus to requirements under Mourinho as a result.
However, Schweinsteiger turned down offers from a number of clubs ahead of the new season – Sporting Lisbon in August notably – and Manchester United have responded in kind by exiling him from the squad. The consensus is that the German deep-lying player would rather sit on his £170K-a-week contract and not feature than play for another club on lesser money. It’s hardly surprising Mourinho has been so ruthless with Schweinsteiger, but the Red Devils won’t be happy with his pandering to supporters considering the situation.
Supporter sympathy for Schweinsteiger not helping Mourinho
Despite knowing back in July that he had no future at Manchester United, Bastian Schweinsteiger has been public in his desire to play for Jose Mourinho. He’s played up to the media when possible to give off the air of a man short on his luck and harshly treated, which has led to supporters sympathising with him this season. Prior to the Manchester derby, Schweinsteiger tweeted good luck to the team on Twitter, and past and present German internationals have come to his defence to criticise United’s treatment of him.
And with Jose Mourinho’s popularity currently waning with fans, the Schweinsteiger saga is another situation spiralling against the Manchester United manager. Matters aren’t helped with the Red Devils enduring inconsistent form in the Premier League, and with the side having problems in midfield, calls have been to bring Schweinsteiger back to the squad. A reprieve is largely impossible, however, as he’s not been named in the Premier League or Europa League squad and was omitted from being in the team photo.
Has Manchester United’s treatment of Bastian Schweinsteiger been harsh? Or have they been right to be ruthless given his refusal to leave the club due to his large wages?