Man United defender Raphael Varane ruled out for a month in huge blow ahead of derby

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 (Manchester United via Getty Imag)
(Manchester United via Getty Imag)

Manchester United defender Raphael Varane has been ruled out for around a month with a hamstring injury.

Varane limped off during Tuesday night’s dramatic 2-2 draw with Atalanta in the Champions League and will miss this weekend’s derby clash with Manchester City.

The Frenchman, who signed from Real Madrid in the summer, has been a calming presence at the back when available, but missed last month’s Premier League meetings with Leicester and Liverpool through injury and his absence was keenly felt as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were well beaten in both games.

He returned to play ninety minutes as United beat Tottenham 3-0 last weekend as Solskjaer switched to a back-three, but with Victor Lindelof also a doubt it remains to be seen whether Solskjaer will be able to stick with that system against City.

Eric Bailly excelled when drafted in against Atalanta, but he and the out-of-form Harry Maguire would look to be Solskjaer’s only specialist options, given Phil Jones’ long exile, though Luke Shaw has played on the left of a back-three in the past.

The international break follows the derby, but Varane seems likely to miss the Premier League meeting with Watford on November 20, as well as the vital Champions League clash with Villarreal three days later.

United then face Chelsea and Arsenal within the space of five days and Solskjaer will be desperate to have the 28-year-old available again for those games.

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