Jose Mourinho does not know if Marouane Fellaini will be persuaded to sign a new Manchester United contract.
Fellaini’s deal expires at the end of the season, with Roma and Turkish sides Besiktas and Fenerbahce reportedly keen on the midfielder.
Belgium international Fellaini has missed the last month with a knee injury but Mourinho believes the 30-year-old could return in time for the FA Cup and Champions League quarter-finals, should United reach them.
“He is still a young player. His injury, he had a little surgery and he will be back to play in a couple of weeks,” Mourinho told reporters on Friday.
“So if you proceed in the Champions League after Sevilla he will be ready for a hypothetical quarter-final, he will be ready for a hypothetical FA Cup quarter-final, he will be ready for the last couple of months of the Premier League fight.
“Is he going to stay or leave? I don’t know. I want him to stay, the club wants him to stay. The process, negotiation, numbers – the distances between the offer and what he wants, I really don’t know.”
In Fellaini’s absence, Scott McTominay has broken into United’s midfield, with the 21-year-old preferred to Paul Pogba for the Champions League draw at Sevilla.
The 21-year-old is reportedly the subject of an international tug-of-war, with McTominay qualified to play for both Scotland and England, but Mourinho is unsure about the player’s international future.
“I don’t know if that’s true,” said Mourinho. “I can’t confirm, I have no information about that.
“My advice to him is not about national teams, it’s to keep the way he is, very humble and open to learn, intelligent and keep going in the same direction, same profile, trying to fight to have minutes with Manchester United, which is not easy.
“The national team will be a consequence of his work at the club. I can’t confirm both national teams have contacted him, I don’t know. [He has made a] real evolution but I think it’s a consequence of his profile as a boy.
“And I think people around him are the right people. I think – I never met them – but I have to believe that the kid with his attitude towards the others and towards football, I believe the parents must be really good people.
“The kid is very fit on the ground and very calm, so I think he passed some important tests. Not by the football point of view, but the mental point of view. Maturity, calm, play against champions, play knockout in the Champions League, two tests for mental approach.
“A long way to go, obviously, but very fit on the ground, very stable and I hope he can keep the same direction.”