Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has claimed he remains open to keeping Memphis Depay at Old Trafford – but won’t stand in his way if he desires a move.
The Dutchman has struggled for regular action since Mourinho’s arrival in the summer, and the 22-year-old has failed to impress since his £25million move from PSV Eindhoven in 2015.
He hasn’t featured for United since the 4-0 win over Feyenoord in November, with Anthony Martial, Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford all ahead of him in the pecking order for his preferred spot on the left wing.
Everton boss Ronald Koeman is a big fan and is keen on taking him to Goodison Park on loan.
But Mourinho is reticent to let either he or Depay depart on a temporary deal and has now stated that if he can’t do a permanent deal, then he will be happy to use him as the season progresses.
“I was informed by the club that there is a chance Memphis could leave,” Mourinho told Fox Sports. “From a human point of view, I cannot stop him from leaving when he is not playing under me.
“If he is staying, I would be more than happy because he is a fantastic guy and a very good player. I feel so sorry that I am not giving him opportunities to play. A player of his age needs to be playing matches.
“If he stays with me, for sure, he will play some games because we have so many matches.”
Mourinho’s latest comes just days after he declared both Depay and Morgan Schneiderlin wouldn’t play for the club again.
However, it appears that if the Dutch winger remains when the transfer window closes, then the United boss will again begin to include him in his matchday squads.