Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho says he is “not confident” he will get any new signings before the transfer deadline.
United have until 5 p.m on Thursday to add new players ahead of the start of the season. Sources have told ESPN FC that United are interested in central defenders Jerome Boateng, Toby Alderweireld, Harry Maguire and Yerry Mina but Mourinho — who has said the season could be “difficult” if the squad is not bolstered — admitted at a news conference on Thursday he is not expecting any new arrivals.
“I am not confident,” Mourinho told a news conference ahead of Leicester City’s visit to Old Trafford on Friday, the first match of the 2018-19 Premier League season.
“The market closes today. It is time for me to stop thinking about the market because the market will be closed.
“I focus on the players I have for the first couple of matches.”
Asked whether he he believed there would be any movement in or out of Old Trafford on deadline day, Mourinho replied: “The information I have is no.”
Sources told ESPN FC on Wednesday that while United were still pursuing a centre-back, but the chase has become problematic during the final hours of the window. As it stands, Alderweireld and Maguire are considered too expensive, while Bayern Munich have knocked back a loan move for Boateng.
Sources also say United have baulked at the agent fees involved in signing Mina from Barcelona while sources close to the club have knocked down reports of a bid for Chelsea’s Kurt Zouma.
Mourinho revealed he will be without six senior players for the game against Leicester.
He said: “[Sergio] Romero, he had a surgery after his injury, [Antonio] Valencia, he was injured in pre-season, Marcos Rojo, he was injured in the World Cup,[Diogo] Dalot had a surgery in Porto at the end of April and he is not yet ready.
“Ander Herrera was injured against Bayern, [Nemanja] Matic was injured in the World Cup and had surgery in Philadelphia a couple of weeks ago.”
Mourinho will have to decide whether or not to pick Jesse Lingard, Paul Pogba, Ashley Young and Marouane Fellaini against Leicester after they returned from post-World Cup break on Monday.
Marcus Rashford, Victor Lindelof and Romelu Lukaku returned early and should be available.
“They return on Monday, trained Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and today so you can imagine that they are not really fit and ready but we have needs,” Mourinho said.
“The list that I gave you before of the injured players is an important list and today after training I will speak with that group [of World Cup players] because everybody is different physically and mentally to see how they feel, how they are and to understand if they think how they can help or not help.”