Cristiano Ronaldo and Paul Pogba will not play for Manchester United in their final game of the season – so the latter could have played his last match for the club.
Manchester United will face Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Sunday to close the curtains on a disappointing 2021-22 season. Their trophy drought continued and they fell well off the pace in the Premier League.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer lost his job as manager less than halfway through the season. Ralf Rangnick replaced him on an interim basis and Erik ten Hag will come in as a permanent successor this summer.
There could be many further changes at the club in the weeks and months to come. First, they have one last game with Rangnick on the touchline.
It will be decisive for where they finish in the final standings. Win, and they will be guaranteed a place in next season’s Europa League by coming sixth.
But if they draw or lose and West Ham win, they would be overtaken and fall into seventh, which is only good enough for the Europa Conference League.
Therefore, although they already know they won’t be where they belong in the Champions League, there is still a lot at stake for their final game.
And they will have to go into it without this season’s top scorer Ronaldo, as reported by The Athletic.
Erik Ten Hag wants to partner Cristiano Ronaldo with Lauturo Martinez
Manchester United manager Erik Ten Hag wants to pair Cristiano Ronaldo with Lauturo Martinez from Inter Milan this summer
Ronaldo has suffered a hip flexor injury, similar to those that kept him out for short periods in January and March. As a result of his latest issue, his season has ended.
The 37-year-old scored 24 goals in 38 appearances across all competitions in his first season since returning to Manchester United.
Ronaldo joins Pogba on unavailable list
Also set to miss the last game of the season for United is midfielder Pogba. He has been out for a few weeks with a calf injury.
It seems he has not recovered in time to bid a final farewell to the club he has represented in 233 matches.
Pogba’s contract expires in the summer and he is likely to leave as a free agent. A return to Ronaldo’s former club Juventus is possible for the France international after talks were held.
Pogba’s final season as a Man Utd player has been even more disrupted by injuries. He has only managed 27 appearances in all competitions; this will be the 20th he has been unavailable for due to physical problems.
Sadly, his opinion-splitting United career appears to have ended with a whimper.