Word stemming from the English media on Thursday night points towards fresh tension in the Manchester United dressing room, amid increasing pressure on the shoulders of captain Harry Maguire.
The subject of Maguire’s status as lead member of Ralf Rangnick’s squad has of course come back to the fore in a major way of late.
This comes owing to a less than impressive stretch of form on the part of both the English international himself, and United as a collective unit.
In turn, it has been suggested that the former Leicester City star could be relieved of the burden of the captain’s armband at Old Trafford, in a bid to rediscover his best form.
And, on Thursday, a fresh insight into precisely this possibility has been provided.
The info comes courtesy of David McDonnell of The Mirror, who goes as far as to suggest that ‘Cristiano Ronaldo and Harry Maguire are embroiled in a power struggle over the Manchester United captaincy’.
Ronaldo, Maguire and Ralf Rangnick are understood to have held discussions over the prospect of United’s veteran attacker taking on the responsibility of the armband for the remainder of the campaign.
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The club’s current skipper, however, remains ‘reluctant’ to agree to as much, amid fears of losing his role as captain of the club on a permanent basis.
Maguire has been left to feel ‘undermined’ by the extent of Ronaldo’s influence in the dressing room at Old Trafford, with it significantly even claimed that a growing number of the club’s stars believe it is only a matter of time before the Portuguese indeed replaces his defensive teammate as Rangnick’s chief leader on the pitch.
EXCLUSIVE Cristiano Ronaldo and Harry Maguire in Man Utd captaincy row as Ralf Rangnick faces fresh crisis
— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) February 17, 2022
Elland Road test
Turning attentions back towards the action on the pitch itself, Manchester United will of course return to action this coming Sunday, in a highly-anticipated Premier League showdown with long-time rivals Leeds.
The clash marks a crucial one for both sides, with Marcelo Bielsa’s Peacocks in the midst of a tense battle against the drop back to the Championship.
Sunday’s visitors to Elland Road, on the other hand, remain in the thick of the fight for a top-4 berth, having climbed back above West Ham into the English top-flight’s final Champions League spot courtesy of a 2-0 downing of Brighton on Tuesday night.
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