By Will Butcher
Jose Mourinho has completed a full Manchester United U-turn after declaring Bastian Schweinsteiger can remain at Old Trafford.
The 32-year-old has been strongly rumoured to leave United in January after being frozen out of by the Portuguese boss, but returned to make his first appearance of the season with a 10-minute cameo appearance against West Ham.
Ahead of United’s clash against Everton on Sunday, Mourinho revealed that Schweinsteiger’s determination had impressed him before stating that he is welcome to stay at the club in next month’s transfer window.
“He’s another one who can help us,” Mourinho said, as quoted by the Daily Telegraph. “Of course it was 3-1 and he came on for 10 mins but if needed him before he was ready.
“His future is about this, he’s another in the squad. Of course he can [stay]. He is so happy and proud with his efforts. I like players with determination.”
Schweinsteiger faces plenty of competition at Old Trafford for a place in the middle of the park, as Paul Pogba, Michael Carrick, Morgan Schneiderlin, Ander Herrera and Marouane Fellaini all look to gain a starting spot.
Sunday’s opponents Everton had been reportedly interested in offering the retired Germany international an escape route from Old Trafford, with the Toffees weighing up a loan move.
But after being applauded every time the former Bayern Munich star touched the ball on Wednesday night during the 4-1 EFL Cup quarter-final win over West Ham, Schweinsteiger could be set to stay.
Everton could even find themselves facing their January transfer target, as United look to close the gap on the top end of the Premier League with three points.
A win against Ronald Koeman’s side at Goodison Park could see United move to within one point of Tottenham, who sit in fifth place.
In other Manchester United news, Henrikh Mkhitaryan has insisted that he has no regrets about moving to United this summer.