Man United striker Højlund sidelined with muscle injury

Manchester United striker Rasmus Højlund has been ruled out for up to three weeks with a muscle injury which is set to keep the striker sidelined for the derby against Manchester City.

Højlund, who has scored in his last six games, could miss as many as five matches, starting with Fulham‘s visit to Old Trafford on Saturday.

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The 21-year-old is also unlikely to be available for the game against City at the Etihad Stadium on March 3.

Speaking at a news conference on Friday, manager Erik ten Hag said: “It’s a small injury, two to three weeks.

“That’s what happened, that is the risk of playing at high intensity and training. It’s not a big injury but he has to wait now for two or three weeks.”

Højlund’s injury is another blow for Ten Hag who is already without Luke Shaw, Lisandro Martínez, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Tyrell Malacia and Mason Mount.

It leaves United without a recognised striker and left-back as they try to claw their way back into the race for Champions League football.

Ten Hag’s team are sixth in the table, five points behind fourth-placed Aston Villa.

“[Injuries] are an issue but other clubs have this and we have to deal with this,” said Ten Hag.

“I feel we can deal with it better but it’s an issue with the depth of the squad.”

United confirmed this week that Sir Jim Ratciffe’s has completed his deal to become a minority owner.

The 71-year-old British billionaire has said his ambition is to bring success back to Old Trafford and Ten Hag has insisted those plans include keeping him on as manager beyond the summer.

“We speak a lot,” said Ten Hag. “There are many conversations with him, with Dave Brailsford, about this club, about this team, about the structures.

“We are very aligned. It totally fits with ambitions I have, ambitions I had when I came in. I’m 19 months in and I see we are going in the right direction.

“We have had setbacks in the second season but you see the team coming, the squad developing, work hard on the training pitch, work hard during games.”