Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has paid tribute to the sacked Leicester City coach Claudio Ranieri while ruling Henrikh Mkhitaryan out of the EFL Cup final with Southampton at Wembley on Sunday.
Mourinho however expects Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick to be available against the Saints.
Mkhitaryan was replaced against Saint-Etienne after scoring United's goal in a 1-0 win in the second leg round 32 of the Europa League.
Speaking in Friday's pre-match press conference ahead of the League Cup final, Mourinho also stated that a decision will be taken on the fitness of centre-back Phil Jones on Saturday as he is also closing on a return.
"Michael [Carrick] is available. Clever, experienced. He left the pitch [against Saint-Etienne] in the right moment so Michael is available. Mkhitaryan is out and Jones, let's see and decide tomorrow.
"Wayne's fine, he's training with the team. He was not selected for Saint-Etienne because he was not ready to play but he was ready to have one more important training session and no doubts, no doubts, he is involved in the game."
>Reacting to United's round of 16 Europa League pairing with Russian team FC Rostov, Mourinho described it as a bad draw.
He said: "It's a bad draw in every aspect. It's far and is difficult. It's far and comes in a bad period for us. It's difficult because they are a very difficult team, they had a very good Champions League campaign. They’re defensive and physical but we’ll go for it.”
Mourinho played down thoughts on winning a trophy in his first season at United.
" I have so many good things in my career that I wouldn't be influenced by a little detail. The important thing is the club and the fans.”
And on his idea of putting Ranieri's initials (CR) on his jacket in his press conference, Mourinho said it is his own way of showing respect to the Italian who was sacked by Leicester City on Thursday.
"It’s my little homage to somebody that wrote the most beautiful history of the Premier League.It's difficult to accept.”