Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has explained his decision to reinstate veteran midfielder Bastian Schweinstieger to the first team squad.
The former Germany international was surprisingly cast into exile at the beginning of the campaign, and he has yet to feature this season.
However, Mourinho brought the 32-year-old back into first team training on Monday and he will now be in contention for a return to action.
Article continues below
And when asked why he brought the World Cup winner back, he replied: "It's a human decision, a professional decision".
The BBC reported that Schweinsteiger had returned to training this week, and Mourinho elaborated further when facing questions ahead of the club's Europa League tie with Fenerbahce on Thursday.
Article continues below
"Schweinsteiger is back. We made that decision last Thursday. We phoned him last Friday so he could join the team last Monday," Mourinho said.
"It was a decision based on fact that we are in a period of the season where it’s really difficult with everybody together.
"The problem of tactical work that I like to do with 21 players max, to have 23/24 at a time doesn’t happen".
Mourinho then went on to praise Schweinsteiger's attitude during his exile, hinting that his overriding professionalism helped sway a decision in his favour.
"Looking at Bastian and the way he was working professionally every day with the fitness coach, we think it’s a professional decision to bring him back to the team.
"We will be much better prepared, much better conditions, in case his future decision is to leave the club. In this moment we have no problems in midfield like we do in defence. If we do have problems in midfield, he’s one option for us.
"It’s a decision that can be positive for the group".
Valencia 'out for a while'
However, despite the good news for Schweinsteiger, there has been a blow for Antonio Valencia , who Mourinho confirmed would not be making a swift return to the side thanks to a recent injury.
Mourinho confirmed that the Ecuadorian will be "out for a while" before suggesting that the void will be filled by Italian international Matteo Darmian.
"He [Darmian] played really well in the last match against Burnley.
"He’s ready to play tomorrow and to give continuity of the good work our right backs are doing in both competitions".
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms