Lukas Podolski has hit out at Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho for his treatment of ex-Germany captain Bastian Schweinsteiger.
Mourinho signed a three-year contract at Old Trafford in May and one of the first big decisions he took was to deem the German star surplus to requirements.
Schweinsteiger has been forced to train with the club's reserve and youth teams and has been somewhat ostracised at United, being left out of various things from their Europa League squad to a recent team photo shoot.
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Podolski was an international teammate of the 32-year-old midfielder, winning the World Cup alongside him back in 2014, and he is in dismay regarding his compatriot's banishment from the first-team.
According to Podolski, Schweinsteiger deserves much better than his current situation and he has had some strong things to say about the Special One.
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"I do not know what Mourinho has discussed with Bastian. But it is clear that it is not okay to drop someone like Basti to the reserves. A coach should always keep his door open to all players, and especially to players like Schweini."
Basti deserves better
In addition to a World Cup triumph, Schweinsteiger also won everything in club football with Bayern Munich and established himself in Germany as one of the best central midfielders in world football.
He moved to Manchester last summer and, even though he racked up 31 appearances in his debut season, the playmaker struggled to make a meaningful impact due to multiple injury and fitness problems.
Schweinsteiger has been commended for the classy way in which he has dealt with what must be the toughest moment of his glittering career. He released a statement last month and regularly tweets good luck and congratulation messages to his teammates on Twitter.
He may not be the superstar that he was in his prime, but given his personality, experience and technical ability, most people think that Mourinho could have found a role for him to play (however small) and they certainly believe that the whole situation could have been handled much better.
What do YOU make of Schweinsteiger's situation at Man Utd? Share YOUR opinion in the comments box below!