Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho claimed on Thursday that the reason why summer signing Victor Lindelof and last season's summer recruit Eric Bailly have yet to start any of United's pre-season games together is due to the Ivory Coast defender's European suspension.
Speaking to the press on Thursday, Mourinho suggested that UEFA's confirmation that Bailly would be missing United's European Super Cup clash with Real Madrid, and their Champions League opening tie is the main reason why he has yet to be paired up with Lindelof. The suspension was a result of the Ivory Coast defender getting sent off in the Europe League semi-final against Celta Vigo.
Bailly had received a straight red after a coming together with Celta Vigo defender Facundo Roncaglia at Old Trafford, which resulted in UEFA handing out a three-match ban on the Ivorian international.
So far during United's pre-season tour, Lindelof has been paired with Phil Jones and Chris Smalling at the back with his only playing time with Bailly being in the second half against LA Galaxy, when Mourinho switched to a back three.
Mourinho said: "Bailly is suspended for the first two matches (in the Super Cup and Champions League), as you know, and I think in the next couple of days we will have the understanding of why I play Lindelof and Smalling."
Mourinho also spoke about how he was unhappy with United's defending in the recent game against Barcelona:
"We didn't defend well, I was not happy with the way we were defending, but that's pre-season. In the second-half lots of changes for them and for us, but both teams play for the result in spite of it's a friendly, both teams played for the result."