Ronaldo and Rashford absent for Man Utd´s clash at Villa
Cristiano Ronaldo and Marcus Rashford were notable absentees from Manchester United’s squad for Saturday’s clash with Aston Villa.
Ronaldo missed the FA Cup third-round tie between the sides on Monday due to injury and the 36-year-old was not fit enough to feature at Villa Park, despite Ralf Rangnick’s hopes on Friday that he would have the striker available.
Harry Maguire and Jadon Sancho missed United’s 1-0 victory over Villa, but both returned to United’s bench for the Premier League clash.
However, there was no place among the substitutes for England international Rashford, who endured a difficult night at Old Trafford at the start of the week and has struggled for form all season.
Interim boss Rangnick told MUTV that Ronaldo and Rashford were being rested due to minor injuries.
“With Cristiano, it’s unfortunately still the same problem with his hip flexor and he couldn’t train yesterday,” he said.
“I had a conversation with him and, after training, we decided it makes sense for him to stay at home and hopefully he’ll be available for the game on Wednesday.
“Marcus had a dead leg two days ago in training. At first, it didn’t seem to be that bad, but overnight it got worse and he couldn’t train.”
Rashford has netted just two Premier League goals in 11 appearances this term, starting only seven times in the top flight.
With Ronaldo and Rashford absent, and Anthony Martial not in the picture, Anthony Elanga was handed a full league debut, with Edinson Cavani leading the line.
A big opportunity for Anthony Elanga today #MUFC | #AVLMUN pic.twitter.com/xFPIXOb1wR
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) January 15, 2022
Villa boss Steven Gerrard, meanwhile, handed a debut to new signing Lucas Digne, who arrived in a reported £25million deal from Everton in the week.
Gerrard’s other new acquisition – his former Liverpool team-mate Philippe Coutinho – took a place on Villa’s bench.
Source: Soccer News
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