The leaks never seem to stop at Manchester United.
These rumours come after reports earlier in the year of a battle for the captain’s armband between Harry Maguire and Cristiano Ronaldo.
The current United captain has had a difficult season. Injuries and a change in manager have meant a lot of different defensive combinations to work with for Maguire, while his play has been abysmal too.
The Harry Maguire leaks
Members of the squad feel like his performances do not match the standard expected at Man United. Therefore, they want Rangnick to drop him.
Manager Ralf Rangnick has defended Maguire publicly after criticism for his poor displays. It seems that the German may have to protect his captain against complaints internally too.
Alternatively, Rangnick could look at other options for his back four.
Man United’s centre-back options
The first choice pairing at Old Trafford, when healthy, appears to be Raphael Varane and Harry Maguire. So, if we keep the Frenchman as centre-back number one, who is his partner?
There are three main options available to Ralf Rangnick. The default backup at the moment is Victor Lindelof. He actually played United’s last league game, a disappointing 0-0 draw with Watford. Lindelof was one of the better players for United that day, impressing with his solid performance.
Another alternative to Harry Maguire is Ivorian defender Eric Bailly. A player who is unfortunately injury-prone, his lack of a consistent spell in the side can make him prone to errors. A notable example would be his own goal in the Manchester derby in November.
There are options available to Rangnick, but are they better than Maguire?
Making a case for Harry Maguire
Harry Maguire has played in 22 of Man United’s 27 league games. When he has played, the Old Trafford side have won 13 matches and lost just five. He has also played in six of Man United’s seven clean sheets this year. However, it must be said that six clean sheets in 22 games is hardly a fantastic total.
In addition, the England man has just one error leading to a goal this season, according to the Premier League official stats page.
In the five games Maguire has missed, his side has drawn four and lost one. They also kept a clean sheet in just one.
Maybe the regular presence of Maguire at the heart of the defence has some benefit after all. Man United as a unit are underperforming, including Maguire, but they are not winning games without him in the side either.
The leaks of dropping Harry Maguire are certainly another concern for Ralf Rangnick.