Jose Mourinho was full of praise for Manchester United duo Ashley Young and Victor Lindelof on the club’s return to the Champions League.
United featured in Europe’s premier competition for the first time since late 2015, comfortably beating Basel 3-0.
Marouane Fellaini, Romelu Lukaku and Marcus Rashford were among the goals, but Mourinho reserved his praise for two players in particular.
“Young was impressive but not a surprise,” he said. “I left Valencia on the bench because I know what he can do, it’s no different to when I played him in so many positions last season.
“He is always positive in his answer. He had a big injury last year, surgery and recovery was really intensive and his approach has been the same in training.”
As well as vital disciple Young, Victor Lindelof also started his first game of the season, and was largely untroubled at the heart of the defence.
“If Lindelof has to play in the Premier League I have no problem with that,” Mourinho added. “Can he make a mistake that comes with adapting to the nature of the Premier League? I think he can.
“But the nature of the Premier League is also changing and we need defenders who can play, who can come into the midfield bringing the ball because it’s becoming really defensive and we’re going to face many teams with five in the back and two or three in front.
“Victor of all our defenders is probably the one to bring more quality when he attacks the midfield.”