Jose Mourinho is prepared to risk Alexis Sanchez's fitness by rushing the attacker into Manchester United's pre season preparations after being left without adequate reinforcements due to the absence of a host of senior players.
United are without the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard due to their World Cup involvement, leaving Mourinho with little choice but to blood youngsters during the pre season tour or ensure the Chile international is fit and firing for their Premier League opener.
Sanchez was due to take part in a full training session with United on Saturday, merely 24 hours after catching a flight to the west coast of America after his visa was belatedly approved.
After the 1-1 draw against Club America, Mourinho was adamant that the 29-year-old would be involved against San Jose Earthquakes on Sunday as his single priority is to get his team primed for their Premier League opener on August 10.
With Sanchez having struggled to hit the ground running at Old Trafford since his move from Arsenal in January, Mourinho is eager to turn his fortunes around by giving him as many minutes on the pitch as possible.
“It is not about when he can [play], but when he has to," Mourinho said after United's opening pre season game in America, via the Telegraph.
“We have no players and especially in attack we have no players. Today was [Anthony] Martial and when Martial left the pitch, it was Mata and when Mata went to the sides, it was a kid [Mason Greenwood] and this was the first time he trained with us in this pre-season.
“No Lukaku, no Rashford, not here and probably not for the start of the Premier League. So, it is about when Alexis lands, and when he lands, he has to play because he trained with us for five days before we depart to LA. If he's coming, he has to play,” he added.
With an abundance of senior players yet to return to the club, the likes of Greenwood, Tahith Chong, Demitri Mitchell, Axel Tuanzebe and Angel Gomes all featured against Club America on Thursday.