Former defender Rio Ferdinand has told the Manchester United board to act on the debacle surrounding Anthony Martial and Ralf Rangnick.
Martial is gearing up to leave Old Trafford this month after losing his place in the first team. The forward has little chance of replacing either Cristiano Ronaldo or Edinson Cavani up front.
Rangnick recently revealed Martial’s desire to be left out for United’s 2-2 draw with Aston Villa at the weekend. “He didn’t want to be in the squad,” Rangnick said.
“He would have been in the squad normally, but he didn’t want to. That is the reason why he was not travelling with us yesterday (Friday).”
The manager’s comments sparked a reaction from 26-year-old Martial. He wrote on Instagram: ‘I will never refuse to play a match for Man United. I have been here for seven years and I never disrespected and will never disrespect the club and the fans.’
Rangnick claims a line has been drawn under the saga, with the situation now ‘resolved’. But should Martial be found out to be lying, then Ferdinand wants the club’s board to act. “Do you know what? That situation there is a perfect example for the hierarchy of that football club,” Ferdinand said on his Youtube channel.
“If Martial isn’t telling the truth there – and I’m not casting any dispersions – if he did refuse then someone at that football club needs to come out and absolutely put this to bed.
United need to shut Martial down – Ferdinand
“They need to give pure clarity, put a line in the sand, put a flag down and say, ‘this is us and this is where we’re at’.
“At the moment, Rangnick has come out with what he said and Martial responded and basically said the manager is lying.
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“Someone better come out today or tomorrow and say something. You can’t have a player coming out and belittling what you say. No chance.
“He needs to get shut down if it’s true. If Rangnick is right, there’s no way any player should be allowed to speak like that.”
Rangnick makes ‘extraordinary’ player claim
At Tuesday’s press conference, Rangnick gave an update on Paul Pogba and called the Frenchman ‘extraordinary’.
“Pogba had his first day of training with the whole group yesterday and in the first training session he showed what an extraordinary player he could be,” the manager said.
“Pogba won’t be available for selection in either of this week’s games, though.”
On forwards Ronaldo and Marcus Rashford, Rangnick added: “Cristiano and Marcus were training yesterday, so I suppose they will also be training today. But at the press conference before the Villa game, I was also convinced that Cristiano would be available and in the end, he wasn’t.
“It was the same with Marcus, so we have to wait for the training session today. Right now, I think both could be available.”