Manchester United interim boss Ralf Rangnick has defended his decision to substitute Cristiano Ronaldo after the Portuguese showed his disappointment at being hauled off during his side's 3-1 win at Brentford.

That isn't necessarily to mean that this is a concern.

Conscious of how they'd thrown away a 2-0 lead against Aston Villa just days before, he wanted to lock the game up and make United more secure.

That meant removing the player who runs the least, but who was also coming back from injury.

There's then the way everyone now knows this is part of the package with Ronaldo.

It's generally nothing serious, and usually just a sign of the drive that has made him the player he is.

Had any of those players thrown the kind of strop Ronaldo did, it would have been derided as an example of what the Portuguese was criticising last week.

He sometimes doesn ’ t need to say anything.

That is exactly what he gets with Portugal, where he is pretty much seen as a god.

So much of what happens around the team is in service of him.

And Greenwood, 20, isn't the sort of character to feel subservient to anyone.

i have no issues within the squad.

But I am happy for all our young players tonight."

We played the Brentford way.

It was just a little coloured by Ronaldo's reaction.

No such combinations were evident in an opening 45 minutes that threw up a familiar list of ills.

Ronaldo threw a minor tantrum when he was replaced by Harry Maguire, although the decision seemed sensible given he had missed the Villa match with a thigh injury.

Marcus Rashford came on for Greenwood at the same time and quickly added to the good news with his first goal since 30 October.

ivan toney's late consolation to show for it.

Goals from Anthony Elanga, Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford boosted Manchester United's top-four ambitions in a Premier League victory in west London on Thursday night.

It required a much-improved second-half showing from United in order to secure their first league win of 2022, but Rangnick was forced to answer questions about Ronaldo's reaction to being replaced by Rashford with the visitors leading 2-0 at the Brentford Community Stadium.

The Scotland international picked up a lower back injury during the game and attempted to play on, before the injury eventually forced him off.

Later in the post-match press conference, Rangnick added : "The only reaction I got was, 'why me?

i had to take the decision in the interest of the team and the club.

We did the same thing when 2-0 up at Villa and didn't want to make the same mistake again.

"I understand Cristiano is ambitious but maybe when he is a manager in the future, he will make the same decision after 75 minutes.

"I didn't expect him to hug me after being substituted.

"I 've been here now for six weeks and I 've never had an issue with Cristiano.

Bruno Fernandes' influence grew in the game, and he really ought to have capped a fine individual performance with a goal to go with his two assists in stoppage time.

"the first half was fantastic.

In the second half, we were more urgent, attacking higher up the pitch and taking the right decisions in the counter attack and we scored, which is the big difference.

"Elanga was outstanding in the second half, put in a lot of work against the ball and then scoring the first goal.

Mathias Jensen was denied by David de Gea on three separate occasions before Elanga's opener, and Brentford boss Thomas Frank described it as a "miracle" that his side were not ahead at the interval.

"He was by far the best Manchester United player today.

Of the three goals, the second is most disappointing and difficult to come back from.

"I'm unbelievably proud of my team.

They changed the system against little Brentford."

manchester united take on west ham at old trafford on saturday in a huge clash in the race for the top four.

Where do you think Man Utd will finish this season?

Midfielder Scott McTominay started in Wednesday's victory over Brentford and lasted the majority of the game before being replaced after 84 minutes.

However, it is not thought to be too serious and it is expected that McTominay will be in good enough condition to feature against West Ham on Saturday Rangnick is confident the Scotland international will be available for Saturday's visit of one of United ’ s challengers for a top-four finish.

"He got a knock on the back and couldn't breathe properly," said Rangnick.

however, the left back was left out of wednesday night's training session."

Prior to the Brentford victory, Rangnick said : "Edinson had to drop out after training yesterday.

Edinson Cavani was another who was left out of the trip to Brentford on Wednesday after also picking up an injury during training this week.

Pogba has been back in training in recent times and he is expected to become available again within the next couple of weeks.

Defender Eric Bailly continues to miss out as he competes with Ivory Coast at the Africa Cup of Nations.

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