Cristiano Ronaldo injury: Manchester United welcome back four players for Aston Villa trip

Ronaldo missed FA Cup win over Aston Villa with hip problem

Mark Critchley
Northern Football Correspondent
Friday 14 January 2022 13:12
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<p>Manchester Utd’s new manager reportedly needs Ronaldo seal-of-approval (Owen Humphreys/PA)</p>

Manchester Utd’s new manager reportedly needs Ronaldo seal-of-approval (Owen Humphreys/PA)

Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to be available for Manchester United, with Harry Maguire also in contention to play in Saturday's Premier League trip to Aston Villa.

Ronaldo was left out of the United squad by interim manager Ralf Rangnick for the 1-0 FA Cup third round win over Villa on Monday night after picking up a minor hip injury.

The Portuguese was left out as a precaution, with Jadon Sancho and Phil Jones also kept at home after picking up minor issues of their own.

All three players are available to Rangnick for the second part of the double header against Villa, while Maguire has returned from a chest injury that has kept him out since last month's win over Burnley.

"I think they will be available," Rangnick said, when asked about Ronaldo, Maguire, Sancho and Jones.

"They only trained yesterday for the first time - Cristiano yesterday, Harry the day before yesterday. We have to wait for the final training session but they should be available."

United are looking to revive their push for a top-four finish having lost the first game of Rangnick's interim spell on their last Premier League outing, a 1-0 defeat to Wolves at Old Trafford.

Rangnick was appointed with the intention of turning United's fortunes around in the wake of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's departure, but admits that there is still plenty of room for improvement.

"I was fully aware this cannot happen overnight," Rangnick said. "It's a work in progress. We have shown we have conceded fewer goals than a couple of weeks ago, but it's also about controlling the game.

"Obviously we have taken a few steps but things can still get better and we have to find the best possible formation.

“We need to make sure we have the best, freshest players on the pitch and this means we can change formations during the game or one game to another.

"It's still a work in progress and there are still quite a few things to improve," he added.

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