- Manchester United news: All the latest from Old Trafford
- Bastian Schweinsteiger is currently an outcast at Manchester United
- The veteran German was spotted with his tennis star wife Ana Ivanovic
- Schweinsteiger and Ivanovic were joined in Hale on the outskirts of Manchester by Serbian defender Aleksandar Kolarov
- Out of favour on the pitch, Schweinsteiger suffered another blow when he was hit by a parking ticket
Frozen out by Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho and no longer a German international, Bastian Schweinsteiger has plenty of spare time these days.
So it was no surprise that the 32-year-old German midfielder, who isn’t part of Mourinho’s Old Trafford plans, was spotted enjoying an afternoon off with wife Ana Ivanovic on Wednesday.
Schweinsteiger’s career at United has nosedived since Mourinho took over from the sacked Louis van Gaal last summer and in another cruel twist of fate to add to his latest misery, the World Cup winner’s day off in Hale was ruined by a parking ticket.
Former Bayern Munich star Schweinsteiger married tennis ace Ivanovic in Venice in July, and joined his wife in Hale for a walk around the town on the outskirts of Manchester.
The couple were accompanied by Manchester City defender Aleksandar Kolarov and his wife Vesna as the players from the city’s two main clubs put their rivalry to one side for the afternoon.
Sadly for Schweinsteiger, his decision to leave his £100,000 Range Rover parked on a Hale street came back to bite him as two hours after he returned to his vehicle, he found he’d been issued with a parking ticket.
While most of United’s stars have been in action all over the world during the recent international break, Schweinsteiger has spent the last few days training on his own at United’s Carrington base.
Schweinsteiger retired from international football in August and was told in no uncertain terms by Mourinho that he was no longer required by United.
Nonetheless, the 121-cap German decided to stay with the Premier League giants and has been left to train in the gym alone over the course of the last week.
With most of the United squad away, the fact Mourinho chose to call-up youngsters Matty Willock and Ro-Shaun Williams to first-team training ahead of Schweinsteiger showed just how far his star has fallen.
Unlikely to play again for United – as things stand at least – Schweinsteiger has been linked with a move to the MLS with FC Dallas among the clubs said to be interested.
Liverpool were beaten 1-0 by a Wayne Rooney goal in January but they exacted revenge in the Europa League’s last 16 with a 2-0 first leg win at Anfield; they progressed to the quarter-finals after drawing 1-1 at Old Trafford.
This is a fixture that Klopp describes as ‘the salt in the soup’ and he hopes Monday will be a memorable occasion.
‘Both games were intense and competitive,’ said Klopp. ‘We were better in the first game at Anfield. We had a fantastic atmosphere and the players were inspired by that. It was my first time at Old Trafford for the second leg.
‘Maybe people don’t like to hear it, but there was actually quite a good atmosphere there too! It changed the game a little bit and it was real proof of what an atmosphere can do. United were on top but we killed that atmosphere with Philippe’s wonderful goal in the 45th minute.