Luke Shaw fighting to be fit for Euro 2024 with Man Utd full-back a major doubt for FA Cup final

Luke Shaw looks downbeat
Luke Shaw has played less than six hours in 2024 - Getty Images/Ash Donelon

Gareth Southgate has been handed a Euro 2024 injury concern by Erik ten Hag with the news that left-back Luke Shaw is losing his battle to be fit for the FA Cup Final.

The Manchester United defender, 28, has started just a dozen Premier League games this season, the last at Luton in mid-February.

He has not completed 90 minutes for Ten Hag’s team since the start of that month and has made just five appearances in 2024.

Now, Ten Hag has revealed that Shaw suffered a “setback” last week to his recovery from the “muscle injury” that has sidelined him and that could present a major headache for the England manager.

Southgate names a provisional training group on Tuesday and his final party for the European Championship on Friday June 7 – less than two weeks after United take on Manchester City at Wembley.

Centre-half Harry Maguire is winning his own fitness battle to be fit for the Wembley derby clash, which is good news for Southgate.

But the England manager is facing the prospect of naming Shaw in his final squad after the full-back has been idle for nearly four months and with just 351 minutes of first team football under his belt in 2024.

“For England I can’t say because it is not up to me,” said Ten Hag. “But for the Cup final we’re working on it.

“I think Harry Maguire has a fair chance that he will be available, we are planning [on it]. Luke is more complicated in this moment. Let’s say it’s less of a chance he will make it – but there is still a very small, reduced chance.

“Luke Shaw had a setback, now we have to find out how far he is [from fitness].”

‘Strong bond’ between team and fans

United end their disappointing league campaign at Brighton on Sunday with light at the end of the tunnel in terms of their horrendous defensive injury list.

Lisandro Martinez returned as a second-half substitute in Wednesday’s win over Newcastle while Raphael Varane and Victor Lindelof have returned to full training ahead of the Brighton game.

Ten Hag has also played down a furious pre-match spat between Marcus Rashford and a United supporter that took place before the Newcastle game.

Social media videos circulated of the England forward, who declared last month that “enough is enough” due to abuse he has received on social media, being led away from the confrontation by team mates.

“I have seen,” said Ten Hag. “I felt yesterday, there were 68,000 fans – 3,000 from Newcastle, maybe they were negative – but the 68,000 fans were very enthusiastic, very positive about the mood and the spirit and the vibe and the ambience in the stadium.

“That shows the strong bond we have between the team and the fans.”

One unexpected end-of-season bonus for the United manager has been the form of Sofyan Amrabat and Amad Diallo who have been handed first-team starts and responded well.

“It’s internal competition, and I think they perform well for us,” said Ten Hag. “I think their progress across the season is very good from both.

“And now they deserve the chance, took the chance, that’s a problem which is good, and actually what I need and was waiting for all season. It’s a luxury problem, you need a squad to win both [remaining] games.”