Harry Maguire and Cristiano Ronaldo captaincy raft is ‘nonsense’, says Ralf Rangnick

Manchester United interim manager Ralph Rangnick has called reports of a rift between captain Harry Maguire and Cristiano Ronaldo “absolute nonsense”.

Rangnick says he has been told what was written and is not frustrated by it “because I know it is not true”.

“This is absolutely nonsense – I’ve never spoken with players about captaincy,” said the German.

“It’s never been an issue with me. Harry is our captain and will stay our captain.”

Maguire was given captaincy by former coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer two years ago, but the report suggests his authority has been undermined by the return of the 37-year-old Ronaldo.
The England defender responded on social media to say the news was not true, and he and his teammates are “united and focused” on Sunday’s game against Leeds United.

“I’m not frustrated at all because I know it is not true,” added Rangnick. “I don’t listen to that noise because I focus on preparing the team.

“I have heard about what was written. Yes, there were players that were unhappy at the end of the [transfer] window. This has improved and the atmosphere in the locker room is better than it was a few weeks ago.

“It’s about performing well and showing togetherness on the pitch. That’s what we can influence.”

Rangnick said he was only recently made aware of the rivalry between Manchester United and Leeds and is looking forward to playing at a full Elland Road.

“We had quite a few local derbies in Germany,” he said. “Our side though has so much experience playing against sides in this environment.

“As far as I know it’s the first game [for Manchester United] in a full stadium at Elland Road since they were last in the Premier League. We are looking forward to it.”