Cristiano Ronaldo was axed in ruthless fashion by Erik ten Hag in a two-hour meeting on Thursday, reports claim.
After the humiliating 4-0 defeat to Brentford, Ten Hag held a clear-the-air chat with the squad and encouraged them to speak their mind in a safe space.
The Dutchman is not pulling any punches in the Manchester United hotseat and told his players they could air their thoughts on how they came to find themselves sitting rock bottom of the league after two losses.
But according to The Sun, Ten Hag himself kicked off the discussion by telling the squad he was being backed by the board and would not be afraid to make big decisions.
He told them in no uncertain terms that he wouldn’t let his reputation be ruined by those not pulling their weight and anyone not happy was very much welcome to tell him and he would not stand in their way should they want to leave.
Ten Hag told both Ronaldo and club captain Harry Maguire that they would not be starting against Liverpool, who United beat 2-1 at Old Trafford on Monday to record their first win of the campaign.
Although other players spoke up, Ronaldo did not say a word. His antics are believed to have angered Ten Hag – particularly him claiming he would tell his side of the story in an interview.
The Portuguese superstar continues to be linked with a move away just a year after returning to United and at this point Ten Hag is said to be fed up with the saga and wants him out.
In the meeting, Marcus Rashford is understood to have asked his boss about playing as a No.9 as opposed to out wide.
This was something he was promised in pre-season and the England international got that opportunity against Liverpool.
He was a constant threat throughout and scored the second in the second half when he moved to a position on the left after Anthony Martial replaced Anthony Elanga at half-time.
To motivate United players for the Liverpool clash, Ten Hag stuck up quotes from pundits and damning statistics from their first two games around the training ground.
He also joined his players in running 8.5 miles in 33 degree heat on what was supposed to be a day off for United and earned respect from the group after being left “physically shattered”.
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