Ten Hag reveals that Ronaldo was his FOURTH choice as Manchester United captain

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Erik ten Hag has revealed Cristiano Ronaldo was his fourth choice as captain after handing the 37-year-old the armband as Manchester United slumped to defeat at Villa Park.

After a tumultuous summer in which Ronaldo made no attempt to hide his desire to leave the club, followed by him walking down the tunnel before the final whistle at Tottenham last month, more than a few eyebrows were raised when the forward was named as United’s captain for the game against Aston Villa.

Ronaldo was selected as captain as regular skipper Harry Maguire was on the bench, whilst deputy Bruno Fernandes was unavailable for selection due to his suspension.

Possibly selected as skipper as a way to inspire his teammates through his individual brilliance on the pitch, Ronaldo ultimately failed to be the example for the other players to follow.

The former Real Madrid star was unable to have much of an impact on the game and his most notable moment came when he clashed with Villa defender Tyrone Mings in which he was lucky to escape been given his marching orders.

Ten Hag revealed that he had considered offering the armband to summer signing Casemiro for his leadership qualities but ultimately selected the Ballon d’Or winner due to Casemiro’s lack of English.

Speaking following United’s fourth Premier League defeat of the season, the Dutch manager explained his rationale behind handing Ronaldo the captaincy.

‘Harry Maguire is on the bench, our captain of the club. Then it is about David de Gea who is a leader but is a goalie and is far away from the outfield.

‘Then Casemiro is the leader but he is not speaking perfect English so then Cristiano is the leader.’

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