No sign of Cristiano Ronaldo and what we spotted in Manchester United training ahead of Leicester

With the international break out of the way, all attentions now turn to trying to secure a top-four finish for Manchester United’s players.

The Reds have been back at Carrington this week as they get their charge back underway this weekend with a crucial game at home against Leicester. Having fallen four points behind Arsenal in the chase for that final Champions League spot, United have got plenty of ground to make up.

And they may well have suffered a big blow ahead of Saturday’s game at Old Trafford, with one of their biggest stars looking set to miss out. Here’s a look at what we learned from the latest batch of pictures from Carrington.

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No sign of Ronaldo

While his international team-mates Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Dalot were pictured back at Carrington on Friday, there was no sign of Cristiano Ronaldo. The 37-year-old played both Portugal’s playoff semi-final and final against Turkey and North Macedonia, and showed no signs of picking up a knock as he played the full 90 minutes in both.

It seems though the United superstar might have a slight issue, having also not been among the 21 pictured arriving at the Lowry ahead of Saturday’s game. Plenty is always made whenever Ronaldo doesn’t feature, so we’ll have to wait and see what reason is given.

Bruno Fernandes in training with Manchester United

Bruno all smiles after new deal

While his international team-mate wasn’t there to celebrate with him on Friday, Fernandes nevertheless capped off a very good week with a new deal at Old Trafford. Having scored twice to send his country to the World Cup on Tuesday, he then extended his stay with United to 2026, with the option of a further year.

And the 27-year-old was clearly in good spirits back in training with his team-mates. With Ronaldo and Edinson Cavani looking as though they’ll both be out against Leicester, Fernandes could well be left in charge with leading the line on Saturday.

Paul Pogba in training with Manchester United
Paul Pogba in training with Manchester United

Varane and Pogba fit

There will no doubt have been a few nervous United fans as reports came back from France of possible knocks for both Raphael Varane and Paul Pogba while on international duty. The former in particular would have been a worry after coming off just before the hour mark against Ivory Coast.

Varane though was able to start again against South Africa a few days later, while Pogba came off the bench to allay any fears. The pair were also seen in training, meaning they should be fit to feature against Leicester.

Fred in training with Manchester United
Fred in training with Manchester United

fred raring to go

Despite a long-haul trip to South America, both Alex Telles and Fred were back at Carrington on Friday, as confirmed by Ralf Rangnick. “They flew back directly after the game. By today, they should have overcome any jet-lag problems and are available,” the interim boss said.

Fred was among those to be pictured back at Carrington, and he was also seen with the squad arriving at the Lowry ahead of Saturday’s game. He’ll be aiming to take his place in midfield after not featuring in Brazil’s win over Bolivia on Wednesday.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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