Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho offered no guarantees on Tuesday night that Wayne Rooney would be at the club beyond next week, declaring: "You'll have to ask him. Mourinho, who also offered a bleak assessment of full back Luke Shaw’s prospects, offered no warmth for Rooney - refusing to answer when asked if the captain was desperate to play in Sunday's EFL Cup final with his club Wembley opportunities running out. Mourinho’s indifference to the 31-year-old’s availability will make bleaker reading for Rooney - who was considered integral to the United side just a year ago - than his comments on China, which the player is far more likely to be tempted by next season than next week.
There was an abundance of young attacking riches on show at the Etihad and it made for a quite dazzling spectacle but it was two older stagers, Radamel Falcao and Sergio Aguero, accustomed to hearing that their best days are behind them, who left an indelible stamp on this absorbing football match. Anyone who witnessed Falcao’s legs struggling to carry him to the places they wanted to go at Manchester United and Chelsea will have watched with a degree of wonderment at the way the Colombian, 31, tore a hole in City’s defence by showcasing the sort of predatory instincts that, for a good while, made him one of Europe’s most feared strikers. Not to be upstaged, though, was Aguero, whose future may be in doubt following the arrival of Gabriel Jesus but who remains an excellent bet for a goal when required.
Gonzalo Higuain believes Juventus are capable of winning the Champions League this season and is adamant he made the right choice in leaving Napoli. Juve reached the final of the prestigious competition in 2014-15, losing 3-1 to Barcelona in Berlin, while Higuain is yet to win the tournament, having left Real Madrid for Napoli in August 2013, at the start of the season in which Carlo Ancelotti finally guided Los Blancos to 'La Decima', the club's long-awaited 10th European Cup success. The Bianconeri parted with a huge sum, approximately €90 million, in July to lure Higuain away from Stadio San Paolo as they seek to go one better on the big stage.