England manager Gareth Southgate has warned the Manchester United players missing from his current squad that they face a tough test to secure a spot for the World Cup in Qatar later this year. 

The Three Lions are preparing for their fourth Nations League match against Hungary on Tuesday, following a three-match winless streak that has seen them lose in Budapest before draws with Germany and Italy. 

Southgate's focus is already on fine-tuning his squad for the World Cup, which begins on November 21, and managing the "strange lead-in" to the finals that fall midway through the 2022-23 Premier League season. 

There are several notable absentees from Southgate’s ranks this month, including Manchester United trio Luke Shaw, Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford, with Harry Maguire currently the only representative from United in the squad. 

When asked if United’s absence from the Champions League next season could result in their England contingent being fresher than some of their counterparts, Southgate declared "They've got a lot to do to get back in the squad." 

Shaw is currently sidelined through injury and has a clearer route back into Southgate's plans since Chelsea's Ben Chilwell is currently the only recognised left-back available, while Sancho and Rashford were both omitted due to poor form. 

With just one England camp before the World Cup, falling in September with the final two Nations League games against Germany and Italy, opportunities to break back into the squad will be limited and there is vast competition for a seat on the plane to Qatar. 

Rashford contributed four goals and two assists for United in the Premier League last season in 25 appearances, while Sancho's debut season at Old Trafford saw him net three goals and secure three assists in 29 league appearances. 

Southgate has until October 21 to submit a long list of players to FIFA, with the final squad expected to be announced three weeks later.

The 51-year-old, who has come under fire for his perceived cautious team selections, is hoping to work closely with clubs to monitor the fitness of his players early next season.

"Information sharing is pretty good medically and we get the performance data from the Premier League so you've got some markers," he said.

"But equally there's always an understanding that clubs that have big games might not want to share certain things too early if they've got players that might miss games. 

"In general we have decent relationships with the clubs on that stuff but there's always going to be a bit of an element of the unknown in that period."

Jadon Sancho could miss the rest of Manchester United's Premier League season after reacting adversely to a bout of tonsilitis, according to boss Ralf Rangnick.

Sancho has scored five goals and registered three assists in 38 appearances for the Red Devils in a debut campaign that has not always hit top heights since joining from Borussia Dortmund.

The Red Devils have struggled in their quest for Champions League qualification this term and look almost certain to begin Erik ten Hag's Old Trafford reign outside of European football's premier competition.

With the club facing three more Premier League outings before Rangnick vacates the dugout to assume a consultancy role with the club – a position he will mix with being the new head coach of Austria – the former RB Leipzig boss says it's unlikely Sancho will feature again this term.

"It seems Jadon might be out for the rest of the season with his tonsillitis, he most likely will not be available," Rangnick told reporters ahead of United's home clash with Brentford on Monday. 

"The last game is in three weeks, [and] I think for the next two games it's unlikely [Sancho will feature].

"He has got an inflammation on his tonsils and also has had a high temperature, that's why he was not available [for Thursday's 1-1 draw with Chelsea], and he will almost certainly not be available for the next two games."

Although Sancho has made a slow start to life at Old Trafford, only Bruno Fernandes (117) and Luke Shaw (49) have bettered the 48 chances created by the England winger in all competitions for United this season.

Elsewhere, Rangnick said he hoped to have a number of other absentees available for United's first home match against Brentford since September 1975, but noted Edinson Cavani was unlikely to start the match despite his anticipated return to training.

"I hope Fred will make it for the Brentford game, Chelsea was too early for him," he added. 

"With the others, Cavani is supposed to come back to training tomorrow, but he has been missing for the last four or five weeks, is he really a player that could then play against Brentford? Probably not from the start.

"Harry Maguire, Jesse [Lingard] was missing for family reasons today, but I hope some of those players will be back on Monday."

Monday's encounter is United's final home match of the season, but with a host of players either coming to the end of their contracts or expected to depart, Rangnick said his desire to give certain players an Old Trafford send-off had to be balanced with the need for a result.

"I would like to but it's also about getting the best possible result and the best possible performance," he added. "It's not about making any gifts to players. 

"It's not about saying goodbye to the supporters, if it's possible I would like to do that but it's also about getting the best possible result."

United are winless in their last three Premier League games after their draw with Chelsea on Thursday (one draw, two losses), but last lost to Monday's opponents in an FA Cup tie in February 1938, going unbeaten in six subsequent meetings. 

After months of speculation, Manchester United have confirmed Erik ten Hag will take over as the club's new manager at the end of another frustrating season at Old Trafford.

The 52-year-old will have a huge job on his hands when he arrives this summer, with the Red Devils looking unlikely to qualify for the Champions League after struggling under both Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Ralf Rangnick this term.

High up on Ten Hag's to-do list will be deciding who amongst the current squad will be suited to playing his high-pressing, possession-based style of football.

Here, Stats Perform uses Opta-powered data to give an insight into three players who could impress under the Dutchman, and three who may find their days numbered after his arrival…

Who might star under Ten Hag?

Donny Van de Beek

An easy choice. Van de Beek emerged as a star under Ten Hag's tutelage at Ajax, and was a driving force being the Amsterdam giants' terrific run to the Champions League semi-finals in 2018-19. Installed as a creative midfielder alongside Frenkie de Jong, Van de Beek scored three goals and provided two assists during that famous run, with only Dusan Tadic (six) outscoring him for Ajax in the competition.

Having played a paltry 381 minutes for United across 14 appearances this season before being sent on loan to Everton in January, the 25-year-old looks the most obvious player to benefit from the arrival of his former coach

Jadon Sancho

Another player likely to thrive under Ten Hag is England winger Jadon Sancho, who has registered five goals and three assists in 37 appearances in all competitions for the Red Devils since moving from Borussia Dortmund last summer.

Only Bruno Fernandes (98) has created more open-play chances for United this term than Sancho (47), and he definitely stands to benefit from the arrival of a coach whose teams play with genuine width.

Each of Tadic (15), Antony (12), and Steven Berghuis (11) have reached double figures for Eredivisie goals for Ajax this term, so their former coach could be the man to get the best of the England man.

Luke Shaw

Ten Hag's Ajax team deployed their full-backs as a key attacking threat, with Argentine left-back Nicolas Tagliafico netting three goals during 2018-19's Champions League run.

Amongst Premier League defenders, only Trent Alexander-Arnold created more than the 72 chances crafted by Red Devils left-back Shaw during the 2020-21 season, and the England man could rediscover that form if unleashed by United's new boss.

Who might see their position threatened?

Harry Maguire 

The United skipper has faced much criticism for his role in another poor campaign for the Red Devils, and could be the first big-name casualty of Ten Hag's attempts to install a more progressive style of play.

No United defender has made as many errors leading to shots as Maguire in the Premier League this term (three), while his passing accuracy of 86.37 per cent is marginally lower than those of fellow defenders Raphael Varane (87.47) and Victor Lindelof (86.63), potentially marking out the England man as ripe for a replacement.

David De Gea

When another possession-hungry coach arrived in Manchester back in 2016, one of his first moves involved finding a goalkeeper he could trust to participate as his team tried to build from the back.

That man, of course, was Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola, and Ten Hag could look to replicate his acquisition of Ederson by replacing De Gea. The Spaniard has recorded a pass accuracy of just 68.81 per cent in the Premier League this season, way short of elite rivals Ederson (88.35) and Allison (85.22).

Cristiano Ronaldo

Hear us out on this one. The legendary striker's goalscoring prowess remains unrivalled, and his 21 goals in all competitions since returning to Old Trafford last summer put him a long way clear of his nearest team-mate (Bruno Fernandes with nine).

However, the height of Ten Hag's success at Ajax came with Tadic used as a false nine in 2018-19, recording 10 goal involvements (six goals, four assists) during their thrilling European run. 

Besides, with Ronaldo's 140 strikes placing him at the top of the Champions League's all-time top goalscoring charts, can the 37-year-old really be expected to forgo playing in European football's premier competition if United fail to qualify? If not, a potentially tough decision regarding his future could be taken out of Ten Hag's hands.

After months of speculation, Manchester United have confirmed Erik ten Hag will take over as the club's new manager at the end of another frustrating season at Old Trafford.

The 52-year-old will have a huge job on his hands when he arrives this summer, with the Red Devils looking unlikely to qualify for the Champions League after struggling under both Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Ralf Rangnick this term.

High up on Ten Hag's to-do list will be deciding who amongst the current squad will be suited to playing his high-pressing, possession-based style of football.

Here, Stats Perform uses Opta-powered data to give an insight into three players who could impress under the Dutchman, and three who may find their days numbered after his arrival…

Who might star under Ten Hag?

Donny Van de Beek

An easy choice. Van de Beek emerged as a star under Ten Hag's tutelage at Ajax, and was a driving force being the Amsterdam giants' terrific run to the Champions League semi-finals in 2018-19. Installed as a creative midfielder alongside Frenkie de Jong, Van de Beek scored three goals and provided two assists during that famous run, with only Dusan Tadic (six) outscoring him for Ajax in the competition.

Having played a paltry 381 minutes for United across 14 appearances this season before being sent on loan to Everton in January, the 25-year-old looks the most obvious player to benefit from the arrival of his former coach

Jadon Sancho

Another player likely to thrive under Ten Hag is England winger Jadon Sancho, who has registered five goals and three assists in 37 appearances in all competitions for the Red Devils since moving from Borussia Dortmund last summer.

Only Bruno Fernandes (98) has created more open-play chances for United this term than Sancho (47), and he definitely stands to benefit from the arrival of a coach whose teams play with genuine width.

Each of Tadic (15), Antony (12), and Steven Berghuis (11) have reached double figures for Eredivisie goals for Ajax this term, so their former coach could be the man to get the best of the England man.

Luke Shaw

Ten Hag's Ajax team deployed their full-backs as a key attacking threat, with Argentine left-back Nicolas Tagliafico netting three goals during 2018-19's Champions League run.

Amongst Premier League defenders, only Trent Alexander-Arnold created more than the 72 chances crafted by Red Devils left-back Shaw during the 2020-21 season, and the England man could rediscover that form if unleashed by United's new boss.

Who might see their position threatened?

Harry Maguire 

The United skipper has faced much criticism for his role in another poor campaign for the Red Devils, and could be the first big-name casualty of Ten Hag's attempts to install a more progressive style of play.

No United defender has made as many errors leading to shots as Maguire in the Premier League this term (three), while his passing accuracy of 86.37 per cent is marginally lower than those of fellow defenders Raphael Varane (87.47) and Victor Lindelof (86.63), potentially marking out the England man as ripe for a replacement.

David De Gea

When another possession-hungry coach arrived in Manchester back in 2016, one of his first moves involved finding a goalkeeper he could trust to participate as his team tried to build from the back.

That man, of course, was Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola, and Ten Hag could look to replicate his acquisition of Ederson by replacing De Gea. The Spaniard has recorded a pass accuracy of just 68.81 per cent in the Premier League this season, way short of elite rivals Ederson (88.35) and Allison (85.22).

Cristiano Ronaldo

Hear us out on this one. The legendary striker's goalscoring prowess remains unrivalled, and his 21 goals in all competitions since returning to Old Trafford last summer put him a long way clear of his nearest team-mate (Bruno Fernandes with nine).

However, the height of Ten Hag's success at Ajax came with Tadic used as a false nine in 2018-19, recording 10 goal involvements (six goals, four assists) during their thrilling European run. 

Besides, with Ronaldo's 140 strikes placing him at the top of the Champions League's all-time top goalscoring charts, can the 37-year-old really be expected to forgo playing in European football's premier competition if United fail to qualify? If not, a potentially tough decision regarding his future could be taken out of Ten Hag's hands.

England boss Gareth Southgate said Marcus Rashford is "clearly not at his best" after dropping the out-of-form Manchester United forward.

The 24-year-old has registered just six goal involvements in 19 Premier League appearances in a frustrating campaign for the Red Devils, and will not feature in England's upcoming home friendlies against Switzerland and Ivory Coast.

Rashford has earned 46 caps for his country and scored 12 international goals, his last strike coming against Romania in a pre-Euro 2020 friendly last June.

But the forward has made just 10 league starts for United this season, leading to suggestions he could seek to leave Old Trafford in the summer, ahead of the World Cup at the end of the year.

"He is in the same position as everyone else, whether they are in the squad or not," Southgate said. "They've all got to play well towards the end of this season and, in particular, at the beginning of next season.

"It is a difficult time for him, he's clearly not at his best, but there is plenty of time. We know what Marcus can bring, and hopefully, he can rediscover the form he's capable of."

 Rashford was not the only United attacker to be left out of Southgate's squad, with Jadon Sancho remaining absent despite registering five goal involvements in his last six Premier League appearances, having recorded just one in his first 18.

Southgate acknowledged Sancho's club form has improved after the winger made a slow start to his United career, stating his absence was due to the competition provided by England's other attackers.

"You just have to look at the other attacking players in the squad: Bukayo Saka, Emile Smith Rowe, Phil Foden," the England boss said. "Jadon's performances have improved at Manchester United, but it is an area where we have big competition for places."

Southgate also left Manchester City right-back Kyle Walker out of his latest group but was keen to emphasise the upcoming games represent an opportunity to look at other right-back options.

"I had a chat with Kyle; we felt this was an opportunity to have a look at the two younger full-backs," Southgate said.

"We know all there is to know about Kyle; he's a very important player, and he'll be back with us in June [for Nations League matches].

"We are very happy with what he's done. He's been a huge part of the progress we've made with this team, and you can see in the biggest matches with Manchester City this year, he's still been a key player for them.

"These young full-backs [Trent Alexander-Arnold and Reece James] are exciting."

The England boss also hit back at suggestions Manchester United defender Harry Maguire could have missed out on the squad, highlighting his importance to England despite there having been recent criticism of his displays at club level.

"There wasn't a chance we weren't going to call him up," Southgate said. "He's one of our best centre-backs."

Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has been dropped from Gareth Southgate's England squad, while Crystal Palace defender Marc Guehi has been handed his first senior call-up.

Fellow Red Devils attacker Jadon Sancho has also been omitted from the 25-man squad, having also been left out of Southgate's last party in November 2021.

Rashford has endured an underwhelming season at Old Trafford, registering a paltry four goals and two assists in 19 Premier League appearances as his team fights for a top-four finish.

The 24-year-old's frustrating campaign has led to suggestions he could leave Old Trafford, and he described himself as "upset" and "disappointed" after being heckled by his own fans following Tuesday's Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid.

Meanwhile, 21-year-old defender Guehi could make his Three Lions debut in the Wembley friendlies against Switzerland and Ivory Coast, having impressed for Patrick Viera's Eagles this season.

Guehi has made 28 Premier League appearances since leaving Chelsea for Selhurst Park in July, with the Eagles keeping eight league clean sheets this term, a tally betted by just seven Premier League sides.

Along with Rashford and Sancho, Manchester City defender Kyle Walker is another big-name absence, with Southgate favouring Trent Alexander-Arnold and Reece James in his right-back position.

Alexander-Arnold and James have been two of the Premier League's three most creative defenders this season, having recorded 11 and six assists so far this term, respectively (Liverpool's Andrew Robertson has registered 10).

England host Switzerland on March 26 and Ivory Coast three days later, as the Euro 2020 runners-up ramp up their preparations for this year's World Cup in Qatar.

Ralf Rangnick's tenure as Manchester United interim manager has not been a resounding success.

While United have climbed from seventh in the Premier League when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was sacked to fifth, closing the gap to the top four from six points to one, fourth-placed Arsenal have three games in hand and should expect to qualify for the Champions League.

United's hopes of returning to Europe's elite club competition next year – by which time Rangnick will likely have moved upstairs – might instead rest on success in this year's tournament.

Atletico Madrid visit Old Trafford on Wednesday with their last-16 tie level at 1-1, apparently finely balanced – although the first leg was anything but. United were hugely fortunate to escape with a draw after lacking any real fluency in Spain.

Real Madrid great Cristiano Ronaldo will still no doubt be eagerly anticipating this match following his Tottenham hat-trick, but repeating those heroics represents a tall order. He will need help – and the manager's job is to provide that.

Although Rangnick has so far failed to deliver a coherent side able to produce consistent performances, that is not to say there have not been success stories of his reign.

And perhaps Jadon Sancho, who is definitely one of those, can be the man to lift United and their talisman this week.

Sancho is now finding form after a tough start to life at Old Trafford that was somewhat overshadowed by the various other issues United have faced this season, both before and since Solskjaer's sacking.

At another club, Sancho's struggles would have been front and centre, as he remarkably failed to contribute either a goal or an assist in 14 appearances for Solskjaer in all competitions.

That was certainly not what United envisaged when they paid £73million for an England winger whose 107 goal involvements (50 goals, 57 assists) for Borussia Dortmund arrived every 93 minutes on average.

There would have been relief then when Sancho was the star of Michael Carrick's short stint as caretaker, following his first United goal at Villarreal with a second at Chelsea.

Yet more than two months passed before Sancho scored again, kickstarting a vastly improved spell under Rangnick – a coach belatedly having the transformative effect on the 21-year-old many had forecast.

Rangnick's preference for a pressing game was expected to suit Sancho, whose Dortmund in the Bundesliga last season allowed the fifth-fewest opposition passes per defensive action (PPDA – 11.0) and won the fourth-most high turnovers (329).

Under Solskjaer, United ranked a passive 14th in PPDA (14.4), yet that statistic has not altered as drastically as one might have imagined; since Rangnick's appointment, United are 12th (13.3).

Others who have flourished under Rangnick have still done so by leading the press – Fred (51.8) and Anthony Elanga (51.2) rank first and second for Premier League pressures per 90 by United players since the interim boss came in – whereas the speed of United's attacking once they win possession has suited Sancho.

Opta defines a direct attack as "an open play sequence that starts just inside the team's own half and has at least 50 per cent of movement towards the opposition's goal, and ends in a shot or a touch in the opposition box".

Since the start of February, United have scored four league goals from such attacks – twice as many as any other side. Sancho has been involved in all four, striking on the break against both Southampton and Manchester City while laying on assists for Bruno Fernandes and Fred at Leeds United.

The goal at City may have counted for little on a dark day for United, but Sancho has been flying since scoring on his return to the team against Middlesbrough in the FA Cup on February 4, having been granted a period of leave following a death in his family.

"Jadon Sancho is now getting closer to the Jadon Sancho I've known from Germany," Rangnick said at the weekend. "In the end it's all about confidence. Game time, confidence. Confidence, game time. He was performing at a very high level."

He added: "This is what he should be. The club paid quite a few pounds for him in order to lure him away from Borussia Dortmund, and if you pay that amount of money in a transfer fee for a player, he should perform on this kind of level."

Rangnick was speaking after the win against Tottenham, where there was finally a goal courtesy of his combination play with Ronaldo.

It was suggested earlier in the season the pair could not work together – and the woes of both Sancho and United might agree with that argument – but the rapid run in behind and pinpoint square pass for the second of Ronaldo's three goals were evidence of how this attack can succeed.

Ronaldo can continue to thrive with that sort of service, while Sancho only looks better for having a focal point to play off in the mould of former Dortmund team-mate Erling Haaland.

Now, with 13 goals in his past 15 home games against Atletico, including two hat-tricks in the last four, do not bet against Ronaldo proving the difference again on Tuesday. Also, do not bet against Sancho being the man to supply him.

Bruno Fernandes has tested positive for COVID-19 and could miss Manchester United's crucial Champions League home clash with Atletico Madrid.

The playmaker missed Saturday's 3-2 win over Tottenham at Old Trafford, with his absence put down to an undisclosed illness.

Details have now emerged from interim manager Ralf Rangnick, who said Fernandes faced a race against time to be ready for the last-16 second leg on Tuesday.

Luke Shaw could be back from a coronavirus lay-off, while Rangnick is hopeful midfielder Scott McTominay will be able to feature after a calf problem.

Speaking of Fernandes, Rangnick said: "I don't know. With Scotty, I hope so, but he had some muscular problems with his calf. That's why we decided not to play him [against Tottenham], because Scotty, quite like Fred, is only valuable if he can perform with 100 per cent of his physical capacity.

"Luke hopefully will be back in training Monday and Bruno we will have to wait and see until Tuesday. This will probably be a last-minute race with him – due to COVID."

Fernandes has been United's chief creative force in the Champions League this season, with his six assists putting him four ahead of Shaw, who is second on that list at the club. He has also created a team-high 20 chances in the competition, with Cristiano Ronaldo next with nine.

Ronaldo's hat-trick against Tottenham has raised hopes that he can make a telling difference in Europe, too, with United level at 1-1 with Atletico after the first leg in Spain.

Rangnick said of his 37-year-old superstar striker: "He can be a leader with a performance like that. This is what I have been telling him since I arrived, that with this kind of performance he can be one of the engines of the team.

"We have quite a few other players who can do the same, including Fred, Harry [Maguire], Rapha [Raphael Varane], Victor [Lindelof], whoever. Even Edi [Edinson Cavani], when he came on, the last 10 or 15 minutes showed how important and what kind of role he can still play. I wish him to be available until the end of the season."

Rangnick was pleased with Jadon Sancho against Tottenham, with a notable assist for Ronaldo's second goal reflecting the winger's growing influence.

Sancho arrived with a big reputation from Borussia Dortmund last year and the 21-year-old did not immediately make the expected impact, but he is beginning to catch the eye.

"This is what he should be," said Rangnick, quoted on United's official website. "The club paid quite a few pounds for him in order to lure him away from Borussia Dortmund and if you pay that amount of money in a transfer fee for a player, he should perform on this kind of level.

"At the end, they are all human beings. The mere fact he cost a lot of money does not mean that he is playing at that level to start with.

"He told me that of course it was a problem for him to get adjusted to the intensity of the league, to the physicality of the league. Now he has managed to do that. I'm happy to see him play at that kind of level right now."

Kevin De Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez hit doubles as Manchester City thumped derby rivals Manchester United 4-1 to restore their six-point lead over Liverpool at the Premier League summit.

United had won their previous three games at the Etihad Stadium in all competitions but, without the injured Cristiano Ronaldo, they were behind inside five minutes to a close-range De Bruyne strike.

After Jadon Sancho temporarily levelled up against his former club, De Bruyne struck a second to put City back in front before half-time, and then teed up Mahrez for a superb City third in the second half.

United were previously unbeaten in 11 games in normal time in all competitions but conceded a fourth when Mahrez doubled his tally late on, seeing City give themselves some breathing space at the top, albeit with Liverpool holding a game in hand and still having to travel to the Etihad next month.

De Bruyne was left in plenty of space to drill Bernardo Silva's low pass away from David de Gea early on, the Belgium international registering his 50th goal in the competition.

United otherwise made a positive start, despite also being without Raphael Varane, Luke Shaw and Edinson Cavani, and they were level with 22 minutes played.

Sancho was played into space by Paul Pogba and cut inside before sending a delightful curled finish past Ederson from the edge of the 18-yard box.

City restored their lead just six minutes later through De Bruyne, who blasted in after Phil Foden's initial shot was well saved by De Gea and not dealt with by United's defenders.

De Bruyne was again involved when picking out Mahrez from a corner to volley in a third goal for City, and the Algeria international rounded off the scoring in the 90th minute with another crisp finish after VAR judged Alex Telles had played him onside.

Marcus Rashford should follow Jadon Sancho's lead after his recent form turnaround according to Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick.

Rashford was anonymous in a 75-minute shift in United's 1-1 draw at Atletico Madrid in midweek and has only scored five times in 22 appearances this season.

Sancho struggled to make an impact early on at Old Trafford following his off-season move from Borussia Dortmund but has netted two goals and provided two assists in his past six games.

“We had a very similar situation as I can remember with Jadon six or seven weeks ago,” Rangnick said.

“He is the best example of what can happen. It’s the player himself who has to perform and get the best out of his own performance and this is the same with Marcus.”

Rashford underwent off-season shoulder surgery, forcing him to miss the opening two months of the season but Rangnick insisted fitness was no excuse.

“He is definitely not injured," Rangnick said. “I have personally spoken a lot with him.

"It’s with him like with all players: when it counts and they are on the pitch – he started against Atletico Madrid – just have to perform.

"I am pretty sure he is not happy with his performance right now but it doesn’t help if we discuss that every week and talk about our thoughts about what it might be.

“Right now he is trying to find his best possible shape and performance, and we just try to give him helping hands with everything we can. We show him video footage, and we speak with him regularly.

"In training he is in top form – that is why I decided to play him. Now it’s about having that transformation from training to [games] and this is the next step he has to take."

Cristiano Ronaldo acknowledged that he will not "be playing for many more years" but insisted he has the desire to win more.

The five-time Ballon d'Or winner has tasted success in England, Spain, Italy and on the international stage with Portugal.

The 37-year-old boasts the all-time scoring records in the Champions League and men's international football.

But the Manchester United forward wants to keep adding to that illustrious list of achievements as he heads into the twilight of his career.

"It's hard to say that I don’t want to win more," Ronaldo told DAZN in an interview published on Friday.

"If I'm at a club and I'm part of a national team that gives me the opportunity to win more, then why not?

"I know that I’m not going to be playing for many more years, hopefully about four or five more years, we'll see. But I want to win more."

Ronaldo recently endured a lean run of scoring form, failing to find the net in six appearances in all competitions during January and February – his longest run without club goal since a seven-game streak in December 2008 and January 2009.

But he ended that spell with a goal against Brighton and Hove Albion on February 15, taking his tally to 15 in 29 appearances across all competitions this season, and Ronaldo suggested he will carry on playing for as long as he enjoys to.

"I follow my own path, working on a daily basis, still trying to improve in every way and looking after myself both physically and mentally," he added.

"I'm quite old for football. In the past, great players used to play until they were older, but they didn't have as many games as we do.

"I've already reached that number [1,000 games], but like I mentioned, taking care of my body, continuing to work, and having the same enthusiasm as I used to, I can still give it all.

"Most importantly, I continue to enjoy what I do."

Ronaldo's impact has not just aided United in their fight for Champions League qualification, but his influence has also rubbed off on other players, such as Jadon Sancho.

"It is great to play next to someone who people call the GOAT [greatest of all time], so it is actually kind of crazy," Sancho told BBC Sport.

"When he first came into the dressing room I was kind of stunned. I couldn't believe that I was going to be playing alongside him.

"To have him around is fantastic, he is a great player and is a great guy. He always wants to win and for the younger players he is always helping us learn new things, telling us what to do and how to do things to make things better.

"Just being aware what is going on [he can help with] because he has been in the game for so long and he has that experience of how to beat players and to know where to be at the right time, like when a ball is being delivered and things like that.

"He is just a magician. I really appreciate him for that and he is just a great guy overall."

Ronaldo and Sancho will be hoping to partner up for more United success when Ralf Rangnick's side host Watford on Saturday.

United have never lost a home league game against Watford (W11 D2) – no side have they faced more at home in their league history without suffering defeat.

Cristiano Ronaldo sent a pointed "We stand United!" message after helping Ralf Rangnick's Red Devils score a dramatic 4-2 win over old foes Leeds.

The Elland Road victory for Manchester United came at the end of a week when the unity within Rangnick's dressing room has been called into question.

Suggestions of leaks from players to the press have seen criticism aimed at United stars, while it was even claimed Ronaldo and Harry Maguire are in a power struggle over the captaincy.

Interim head coach Rangnick shot down reports he was considering a mid-season change of skipper, saying defender Maguire would keep the job for the rest of the season. The German is in no position to make a longer-term pledge, given he is due to make way for a permanent boss once the campaign ends.

Maguire has also scoffed at the suggestion of such bickering in the squad. It was defender Maguire who headed United ahead in Sunday's Premier League clash in Leeds, while he also won all five of his duels.

Ronaldo was substituted with five minutes remaining, and there was no discontent from the Portuguese at that decision, when in the past he has at times taken issue with being replaced.

The victory strengthens United's hold on fourth place, and Ronaldo later declared: "Very important Premier League win before we change our focus to the Champions League and head to Madrid. Back on track! We stand United!"

The 37-year-old forward sent that message to his social media followers, who number 404 million on Instagram and 97.5 million on Twitter.

Ronaldo was not the only United player to celebrate with fans, as goalkeeper David de Gea told the United faithful in an Instagram post: "I guess you enjoyed as much as I did."

Winger Jadon Sancho also reacted, declaring: "A game we had to win. We delivered together as a team. Have a nice evening Reds."

Midfield general Paul Pogba savoured the occasion, and United's attitude to being pegged back from 2-0 to 2-2, writing: "It's not over until it's over. Great team spirit today, massive three points."

Manchester United's inability to take their chances came back to bite them once more as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Southampton on Saturday.

Che Adams struck early in the second half to cancel out Jadon Sancho's opener at Old Trafford.

In the 3pm GMT kick-offs, Everton ended a six-match winless streak in the Premier League as Frank Lampard oversaw a vital 3-0 win over Leeds United at Goodison Park, while Watford were beaten by Brighton and Hove Albion and Brentford drew 0-0 with Crystal Palace.

Later, league leaders Manchester City moved 12 points clear at the top with a 4-0 thrashing of strugglers Norwich City at Carrow Road.

Manchester United 1-1 Southampton: Rangnick's right, but that won't get the Red Devils points

Ralf Rangnick may have risked the wrath of some pundits after bringing up expected goals in his post-match comments, but the interim manager is correct – his side are creating plenty of chances without putting them away.

United finished the game with 12 shots to Southampton's 13, but an xG of 2.6 to the visitors' 0.9.

 

Nevertheless, for only the second time in their Premier League history, United have failed to win back-to-back matches despite being ahead at half-time in both, having last done so in December 1998.

Across their 10 top-flight games under Rangnick, meanwhile, they have averaged fewer goals per game than they have under any other manager in Premier League history (1.4).

United are at least unbeaten in their last 12 Premier League games against Southampton (W5 D7) since a 1-0 home loss in January 2016, while having only scored two goals in his first 23 appearances for the club in all competitions, Sancho has since netted two in his last three.

Brentford 0-0 Crystal Palace: Bees stop the rot

Brentford ended a run of five straight Premier League defeats and registered a clean sheet for the first time in 12 top-flight games (since a 1-0 win over Everton on November 28), as they drew with Palace.

It was a match of few clear chances (there were only 15 shots in total), though Wilfried Zaha was convinced he should have been awarded a late penalty.

Zaha was making his 250th Premier League appearance for Crystal Palace, just the third African player to hit that milestone for a single club in the competition, after Shola Ameobi (294 for Newcastle) and Didier Drogba (254 for Chelsea).

Everton 3-0 Leeds United: Lampard up and running

Lampard claimed his first league win as Everton manager in style, as the Toffees snapped a four-match losing streak in the competition with an emphatic 3-0 win over Leeds.

Everton went 2-0 up before half-time through Seamus Coleman's first league goal in 69 games, since May 2019, and Michael Keane's 10th goal in the top flight for the club.

 

Both of those were headers and no team have now scored more headed Premier League goals than Everton, who are level with United on 336.

It was the first time Everton scored twice before half-time in 40 Premier League games, last doing so one year and nine days earlier against, coincidentally, Leeds at Elland Road.

Anthony Gordon diverted in Richarlison's shot to seal Everton's biggest Premier League win since a 5-2 victory over West Brom in September 2020.

Watford 0-2 Brighton and Hove Albion: No home comforts for the Hornets

Watford have now lost six consecutive home league games for the first time since August to October 1990, a run which also included a defeat to Brighton.

Neal Maupay and Adam Webster got the goals for Brighton, who have lost just one of their past 12 away games in the Premier League, all coming in 2021-22 (W4 D7) – no side has lost fewer away games in the top flight this term than the Seagulls.

Watford have not kept a clean sheet in any of their past 17 home Premier League matches, equalling the competition's record run without a home shut-out.

Roy Hodgson has taken on a big job, and Watford will want a favour from Aston Villa against Newcastle United on Sunday to remain within three points of safety.

Norwich City 0-4 Manchester City: Perfect Sterling hat-trick sees leaders storm on

City lost on their previous league trip to Carrow Road, but there appeared little danger of a shock this time around as Raheem Sterling's perfect hat-trick helped them to a 4-0 win.

Sterling became the third City player to score a perfect hat-trick in the Premier League, after Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero (twice). Meanwhile, no player has scored more away hat-tricks for the club in the competition than Sterling, with each of his last three coming on the road.

 

The ex-Liverpool attacker became the sixth City player to score as many as 10 headed goals in the Premier League, with only Aguero (19) and Niall Quinn (13) netting more.

City scored at least four goals in a Premier League away game for the 21st time under Pep Guardiola, at least eight more than any other side since the Catalan coach joined the club.

Norwich, meanwhile, have conceded 50 goals in their 24 Premier League games this season – only in 1938-39 (21) and 1946-47 (19) have they shipped 50 in fewer games in a single league campaign.

Manchester United missed the chance to move into the top four in the Premier League as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Southampton on Saturday.

Ralf Rangnick expressed his frustration with United's finishing after a 1-1 draw at Burnley last time out, but he could have few complaints when Jadon Sancho put his side ahead after 21 minutes at Old Trafford.

But Che Adam restored parity just three minutes into the second half and United, who saw two goals ruled out for offside, could not find a winner against Ralph Hasenhuttl's resolute defence.
 
The draw meant United jumped up to fifth, overtaking Arsenal – who are a point behind and have two games in hand – while moving level on points with fourth-placed West Ham, though the Hammers are in action at Leicester City on Sunday.

Cristiano Ronaldo seemed set to open the scoring after just six minutes but his effort was cleared off the line by Romain Perraud, before Adams inexplicably headed away from goal after Kyle Walker-Peters teed up a golden opportunity.  

United struck first when Sancho poked home from close range after Marcus Rashford drilled across from the right following an incisive Bruno Fernandes pass.

Stuart Armstrong went close in response as his acrobatic attempt tested David de Gea, while Paul Pogba's finish was chalked off for offside against Ronaldo in a frantic first half.

Adams atoned for his earlier miss swiftly after the interval as he equalised with a low finish off the inside of the post following Mohamed Elyounoussi's through-ball, before Fraser Forster beat away from Diogo Dalot to keep the Saints level.

Ronaldo thought he had restored United's lead with 19 minutes remaining, but his header was ruled out for offside after Sancho's flick from Fernandes' free-kick, and Forster expertly parried away Harry Maguire's stoppage-time header to earn Southampton a point.

Manchester United winger Jadon Sancho should be fit to face Burnley after his goal against Middlesbrough in the FA Cup.

Sancho scored his first goal at Old Trafford since his lucrative move from Borussia Dortmund seven months ago, but Championship side Boro controversially equalised through Matt Crooks on Friday.

The match then ended level at 1-1 and, after no goals in extra-time, it was the visitors who reached the fifth round in a huge upset, winning 8-7 on penalties.

United are straight back to action against Burnley in the Premier League on Tuesday, the second of a hectic seven-match run of fixtures up until February 26.

Despite being replaced by Juan Mata after appearing to have a hamstring issue against Boro, Sancho should be fit to play his part at Turf Moor.

The man who assisted his goal, Bruno Fernandes, is also set to be available as United look to bounce back.

"Jadon didn't get a knock," United boss Ralf Rangnick told MUTV. "He was just feeling tired.

"He had no injury, he was just feeling some fatigue and had some cramp so that was the reason why we decided to take him off.

"Bruno had a knock on his back but could play through the whole game.

"With Paul Pogba having been out for two and a half months, it was normal that he was substituted after 65, 70 minutes.

"Physically, I don't think we need to lift the squad. Hopefully, for Tuesday, we will have all of those players available again."

 

United were punished for missing a hatful of chances as they failed to win a home FA Cup match against a lower-league side for just the fourth time in the past 32 such meetings.

Cristiano Ronaldo missed an early penalty, Sancho hit the crossbar and Fernandes squandered a glorious chance when he hit the post.

Overall, United had 30 shots, the most of any team in a single FA Cup match since the start of last season, finishing with 4.32 expected goals to Middlesbrough's 1.43.

United have now lost six of their past seven shoot-outs in all competitions and the Champions League is their remaining faint hope of silverware.

Despite the damaging loss, Rangnick felt there was not much to criticise in terms of the overall performance.

"We have played well in the last couple of weeks, in the league and also in the first half [against Boro]," added the German.

"I don't think we could have done a lot of things a lot better, apart from scoring more goals in the first half. We have to take our chances better with more quality than we did.

"The chance that Bruno had, if he had 10 chances like that in a game, he would score nine of them. He hit the post and I think he tried to place that ball almost too accurately into the corner of the goal.

"In the end things like that can happen. Of course he didn’t do that on purpose and for now our full focus must go on the other two competitions [the Premier League and Champions League].

"Of course the players are disappointed like we all are but again this is football, this can happen."

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