Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could be ready to block Manchester United players like Bruno Fernandes from travelling for international duty later this month.
Players who travel from the UK to several ‘red list’ nations would be forced to quarantine for 10 days under coronavirus rules, meaning United’s stars could miss key fixtures if allowed on international duty.
Fernandes would have been expected to play a key role for Portugal in World Cup qualifying fixtures against Azerbaijan, Serbia and Luxembourg.
But when asked about the possibility of Fernandes leaving for international duty after United’s goalless draw against Crystal Palace, Solskjaer said that it ‘doesn’t make sense’.
“We have not sat down and made a proper call on that one but it doesn’t make sense if you lose your player for 10 days’ isolation as we are the ones paying the players,” he said in his post-match press conference.
“From what I understand, that is the rule.
“FIFA have given the rules that they don’t have to be released, so I would think that it is going to be a hard call to make to let them play in red-list countries.
“I want Bruno ready for Brighton and hopefully we will be through in Europe and against Tottenham after that.”
Fernandes was ineffective at Selhurst Park against Palace but he remains one of United’s most influential players and Solskjaer will want to avoid losing him for an extended period.
Portugal’s last qualifying match takes place on March 30, so Solskjaer understands that he could lose Fernandes for three fixtures (if United progress against AC Milan in Europa League) if he was to permit him going on international duty.
Listen to Solskjaer on whether he would allow Fernandes on international duty below:
"It doesn't make sense, we're the ones paying the players"
— StrettyNews.com (@StrettyNews) March 3, 2021