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Eric Bailly May Be Out for Season as Injury Requires Surgery

Manchester United defender Eric Bailly may not come back this season as the ankle injury was more serious than initially thought.

ManU manager Jose Mourinho said that the ankle problem the 23-year-old sustained while playing for the national team won’t heal on its own without surgical intervention. The doctors first tried a conservative treatment but they are at the end of the rope since he’s apparently not responding.

He also said that they have no idea when Bailly can be expected to return. For now, they will continue with the conservative treatment.

Mourinho also wouldn’t provide the specifics of the injury and advised reporters to just talk to the doctor. “There’s nothing to hide, but I don’t want to be speaking about it,” he said.

On when he can return, the manager replied, “I don’t want to be so pessimistic. I want to leave it with a doctor.”

Nevertheless, Mourinho said that they are still okay because of their deep bench. He said this season has not been kind to their central defenders.

“But because the number is four or five, we manage always to have [players available] and Chris Smalling is playing amazingly well for seven or eight matches in a row maybe,” he explained. “So we are fine.”

Mourinho refused to call the Bailly injury as a problem, but only a “setback.” He said they can still contend for the championship with 21 games to go. At present, Manchester United is 11 points behind Manchester City.

“I said we play match after match and the next we have to try to win, we have a difficult one at West Brom and we try match after match,” he said. “It is only over in May, if it is over now I go on holiday to Brazil or Los Angeles.”