UEFA have confirmed that Manchester United’s Europa League Group Stage fixture against Zorya Luhansk will still go ahead this evening, despite concerns over the frozen pitch at the Chernomorets Stadium in Odessa.

UEFA officials carried out a pitch inspection at 10am local time this morning and are optimistic that the pitch will have thawed out enough to be ready for the 8pm kick-off tonight.

An official, who spoke to the Guardian, said: “The pitch is at the coldest now, it’s only going to become warmer as the day goes on.”

Overnight temperatures plummeted to as low as -9 degrees, with areas of the pitch visibly hard underfoot.

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has voiced his concerns over the surface after his team arrived in Odessa on Wednesday night for their first training session, saying that the pitch is too dangerous to play on.

He questioned why UEFA had allowed their tie against Zorya to be played in mid-December in Ukraine, adding that a ‘miracle’ would be needed for the pitch to become playable.


Will Pearson

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