Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s FA Cup plans ruined by Covid-19 setback

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Manchester United youngster Facundo Pellistri has been ruled out of Saturday evening’s FA Cup third round clash with Watford after testing positive for coronavirus. The Uruguayan teenager was in line to make his Red Devils debut against the Championship side but will be forced to wait even longer for his eventual first-team bow.

Pellistri joined United during the summer transfer window with former club Penarol accepting a fee in the region of £8million for his services.

He has been earmarked as one for the future at Old Trafford after scoring twice in six appearances for the club’s under-23 side this season.

The 19-year-old had been training with the senior group ahead of Saturday’s match, but will now need to self-isolate for ten days in line with current coronavirus restrictions.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was expected to involve Pellistri against Watford with the Norwegian boss keen to rotate his squad amid a busy period for United.

Bruno Fernandes, Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka have all featured regularly for the club in recent weeks, and could benefit from being rested on Saturday with two tough Premier League tests against Liverpool and Arsenal coming up before the end of the month.

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The Red Devils are currently enjoying a strong run of form, having not tasted defeat in the league since the narrow loss at the hands of Arsenal at the beginning of November.

United are now second in the table, level on points with leaders and defending champions Liverpool despite the Merseyside club having played an extra game.

Pellistri revealed earlier this month that he has enjoyed training with United stars such as Marcus Rashford, Paul Pogba and Edinson Cavani.

He singled out the latter for special praise, claiming that his compatriot has helped him to settle in at the club with both players arriving in England on the same day.

“It’s been amazing to train with guys like Rashford, Pogba, Mata and Edi [Cavani], who is very close friends with me,” Pellistri told MUTV.

“It’s amazing for me because I watched them on TV and now I am practising with them. The intensity, the high quality they have, it’s great for me to play with them and I improve a lot.

“All the time, I speak with Edi and he is a very nice person. He is always trying to be around me, giving me advice and everything that I need.

“He is there to help me and that is very important for me. I am very happy with that.

“I know he is one of the best players in the world, and one of the all-time best players from Uruguay, but he is also a very nice person.”

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