With the end of the season upon us this weekend, fans can look forward to, well, not a lot. The title has already been decided, there will be no dramatic relegation scrap and literally all there is to play for is fourth place, and even that seems a foregone conclusion at this stage.
Manchester United weren't able to make the most of their run of form to mount a meaningful challenge for the last Champions League spot and this weekend's meeting now represents nothing more than a distraction ahead of their Europa League final clash with Ajax next week.
And seeing as the game is a dead rubber, Jose Mourinho has vowed to fill his squad with players from the under-23 side in the hope of not only giving some of them more exposure to the first team but to keep his established stars fresh ahead of next Wednesday's final.
Mourinho explained in a press conference that he is unhappy with the scheduling of the final, which occurs just three days after their last game with Crystal Palace on Sunday, going as far as to say that it left him with no other choice but to play some of his youngsters.
The Special One virtually gave away his squad to the waiting reporters, with no less than six youngsters all set to make the trip.
“I will bring (Demitri) Mitchell, (Scott) McTominay who were on the bench, Axel Tunazebe, Eric Bailly (suspended for the final), (Matty) Willock will come too, Josh Harrop will come, Zachary (Dearnley) will come," he said per the Mirror.
“Pogba will come because Pogba is not training or playing since his dad passed away.
“And I will put in two or three of my boys who I have been rotating during the games, making some changes to save them.
“But I need to give a little stretch to four or five of my boys to give some stability to the kids."
He then went on to ask the United fans for forgiveness for the naivety and inexperience that his players will likely display before going on to ask something of Palace boss Sam Allardyce.
“I hope the fans at Old Trafford on Sunday, they support the team, they forgive some naivety and lack of confidence," he added.
“And I hope that Big Sam shows that he’s a good friend and he goes slow. He tells Zaha to go slow, he leaves Benteke at home. I hope he goes soft on us.
“In any country in the world, it would be Saturday. It’s frustrating for me. I hope you don’t kill me when you see my team.”
Well there you have it, we never thought we'd see Mourinho asking for mercy, even if it is more of a cheeky request than a serious one.
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