Two Manchester United first-team stars had to be broken up from a ‘full-on scrap’ during a training session on Thursday according to reports. Tensions are high at United in the final stages of a dismal season on all fronts ahead of mass change in the dressing room this summer.
According to The Sun, the ‘shocking incident’ occurred in the latter stages of Thursday’s training session, just over a week until the final game of the campaign at Crystal Palace. The unnamed duo came to blows and ended the session prematurely, with Ralf Rangnick’s squad ordered back to the changing rooms shortly after.
Tempers are understood to have ‘boiled over’ at Carrington due to United’s torrid season on the pitch, issues with training and poor relationships with the current interim manager. The report claims even squad members used to internal bust-ups were left ‘stunned’ by the scenes.
Rangnick granted his broken dressing room more time off in the wake of last Saturday’s 4-0 humiliation at Brighton & Hove Albion, who hadn’t previously won a home game in 2022. And next Sunday, another defeat against Palace at Selhurst Park could condemn United to Europa Conference League football next season.
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Erik ten Hag will inherit a squad in desperate need of inspiration and hope this summer, and the Dutchman has already started his job from Amsterdam after winning his third league title with Ajax on Wednesday. On the day of the training bust-up, Ten Hag met John Murtough to discuss the club’s recruitment plans ahead of his debut campaign at Old Trafford.
The 52-year-old wants four signings in the summer transfer window – two midfielders, a centre-back and a striker. And he is understood to be ‘desperate’ for a reunion with Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong, who shined under his watch at Ajax before moving to the Nou Camp in 2019.
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Ten Hag has also told club scouts to target potential free transfers as he works with a limited budget of around £100million. Paulo Dybala and Ousmane Dembele could be two enticing options, but the absence of Champions League football at Old Trafford could deter efforts to sign players of their ilk.
With nine days left until the final day of the Premier League season, Rangnick has a mighty task to squeeze a good performance from his side against a dangerous Palace outfit. But if the Red Devils slip up again, West Ham United will be confident of stealing sixth and their spot in the Europa League.
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