Manchester United defender Victor Lindelof has returned to his native Sweden with his wife and children after they suffered a "very traumatic" break-in at their home in the north west of England.
A statement from his wife, Maja, revealed that she and her children had to lock themselves in a safe room to escape the invaders, however they had escaped physical harm.
Lindelof has been allowed leave from the Man Utd squad, meaning he will miss their Premier League game at home to West Ham on Saturday and potentially further matches afterwards.
What happened to Victor Lindelof's family?
In a statement, Victor's wife Maja Lindelof revealed the break-in occurred while Victor was playing in Man Utd's midweek 3-1 league win at Brentford.
"During Victor's game this Wednesday night we had a break-in at our house in Manchester," the statement said. "I was home alone with both the kids but we managed to hide and lock ourselves in a room before they entered our house."
"We are okay under the circumstances but it was obviously a very traumatic and scary moment for both me and my little kids. We are now in Sweden and are spending some time off with our families."
A statement from Manchester United on Lindelof confirmed he had been made aware of what happened following the Brentford match. “We can confirm that a break-in occurred at Victor Lindelof’s house during the away game against Brentford," the statement said. “His family, who were at home at the time, were unhurt but clearly shaken. This was a distressing experience for them, and for Victor when he learned of it after the game, and the club is providing them with our full support.
“We encourage anyone with information about the crime to contact the police.”
Manchester United manager Ralf Rangnick confirmed in his press conference on Friday that Lindelof would not play in the upcoming Premier League match against West Ham and has his full support to stay with his family at the current time. "I spoke with him at length on our flight back home from London and also this morning," Rangnick said. "We spoke for 20 or 25 minutes, he told me what actually happened, that this was a traumatic event, especially for his wife and three-year-old son.
"He said to me right now he needs to stay at home, he doesn't want to leave his wife and family on their own, which I can fully understand, being a father of two children myself. We agreed he will not be on duty tomorrow for the game."
What does it mean for Manchester United?
Lindelof had started the last two Premier League matches, with Harry Maguire dropped for poor form. Lindelof wasn't much better, as United conceded twice in a capitulation to Aston Villa before looking shaky in the first half against Brentford.
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It's likely that Maguire will come back into the starting lineup to replace Lindelof, at least for the time being while the Swede steps away for family reasons. He will likely partner with Raphael Varane who has re-established himself in the starting lineup after recovering from a hamstring injury.
Man United also has Phil Jones available, with the fan favorite stepping in for the loss to Wolves with the squad decimated by COVID-19 and injuries.
Sancho also absent for personal reasons
Jadon Sancho may also not play this weekend after missing the Brentford game due to a family bereavement.
Rangnick said: "He didn't train yesterday because he still asked us to not train. He attended a funeral on Wednesday, it still affected him quite a lot, he is expected back to training this afternoon at three o'clock, but right now I'm not sure if he will be available for the game tomorrow."
"It was an important member of the family, somebody he was close to all his life. I have to wait and see, speak to him before training and after training and take the decision."