Van Gaal poised to give Bastian Schweinsteiger his first start for Manchester United against Newcastle

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Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has hinted that World Cup winner Bastian Schweinsteiger will start his first competitive match for Newcastle’s visit to Old Trafford on Saturday.

In an interview with MUTV, van Gaal suggested the former Bayern Munich player, who has been used sparingly so far this season, will start against the Magpies.

However, the Manchester boss said Phil Jones will not play due to illness and Marcos Rojo is unlikely to feature as he is still improving his match sharpness.

“It’s still the same,” van Gaal said, when asked to update on his players’ injury problems. “Only Jones is ill, but it’s getting better with him. He’s already running on the pitch. It’s not bad. Rojo needs match fitness, yes.”

Van Gaal was asked if Schweinsteiger is ready to start. He said: “Yes, of course. It’s a matter of time. Maybe it shall happen tomorrow. You never know. I think he can still do better because when you are not fit enough then it is difficult to show your highest level. But I think it’s also a matter of time and we have seen a solution in rotating our [second] captain, Michael Carrick, with Schweinsteiger. I think it’s a very good solution because we can spare them both for the big moments.”