Liverpool midfielder Emre Can has accused Manchester United of showing his former German international team-mate Bastian Schweinsteiger a lack of respect.
Schweinsteiger, 32, began the season training with the kids and being cut out of the official team photo.
He said: ‘I know Schweinsteiger very well and I used to play with him. He’s a very good guy and a legend. They don’t have too much respect for him [at Manchester United]. It’s a pity because he’s a very good guy, he’s always somebody who worked hard and is always a gentleman.’
Mourinho reportedly blocked Schweinsteiger from playing for the under-23s to maintain match fitness but the player has won the PR war by refusing to publicly hit back and by being a good presence around the training ground.
That does not surprise 22-year-old Can, who said: ‘I just know one story from me; when I came up to the first team [at Bayern Munich], Bastian Schweinsteiger was the first one who came to me and said, “if you need something, come to me”.
‘It was a big help for me and I’m very thankful for that. I will never forget that.’
Former Bayern Munich President Uli Hoeness has accused United of treating Schweinsteiger like ‘a leper’.
Schweinsteiger won the Champions League with Bayern in 2013 and was man of the match the following year in the World Cup final when Germany defeated Argentina.