Erik ten Hag blocks Alejandro Garnacho Summer World Cup participation with Argentina

Manchester United have barred Alejandro Garnacho from playing in the U20 World Cup this summer in his native Argentina.

Although Garnacho, 18, has been injured for six weeks and has only just returned to training, United boss Erik ten Hag has said the club will not release him for the tournament. When asked if United would allow the winger to play for Argentina, Ten Hag replied: “No, we’re not releasing him.

Erik ten Hag blocks Alejandro Garnacho Summer World Cup participation with Argentina

“He will partially return to team training tomorrow. Then we will have to see when he can return to full training and return to matches. Ten Hag also revealed he subbed goalscorer Jadon Sancho at half-time in Thursday’s 2-2 draw at Spurs because he wanted more energy and work ethic in the team.

“He scored a great goal,” Ten Hag said. “I think he needed to score one more goal. He put in a pretty good performance. But we also lost control and the defensive organization on the left wasn’t great either in the pressing before half-time. So I was hoping to improve that.

Ten Hag hailed Bruno Fernandes as the example Manchester United players must follow if the club is to build a winning culture. The midfielder was pictured wearing a protective boot after injuring his ankle in United’s FA Cup semi-final victory against Brighton on Sunday, but recovered in time to captain the side in the 2-2 draw on Thursday against Tottenham Hotspur.

United were up two goals at half-time, with Fernandes instrumental in setting up Marcus Rashford to score after Jadon Sancho gave the visitors an early lead. Then Spurs hit back after the break to grab a point thanks to goals from Pedro Porro and Son Heung-min.

After seeing his team throw a two-goal lead, the United manager praised his skipper’s willingness to suffer for the cause and called on the players to make Fernandes their inspiration if they want to find consistency to compete on all fronts.

“I think as Man United and as a top team you have to fight and go for victory in every competition you’re in, so that’s what we do,” said Ten Hag. “That’s the culture we want to build, so that’s what we do. It has to be in the mindset of every player and every staff member who works for Manchester United.”

Erik ten Hag blocks Alejandro Garnacho Summer World Cup participation with Argentina

Speaking about Fernandes’ recovery, he said: “It’s been tough, big compliments to Bruno. He absolutely doesn’t want to miss this game and has done everything to get fit. I think he’s the role model and that you have to suffer and you have to make sacrifices if you want to play at the highest level if you want to achieve something.

“So he showed once again what a great captain he is, how much he takes responsibility even when he’s not 100 per cent fit. But he did his job, he was also important in this game. Hopefully the team can’t learn, but can see him as an inspiration and do the same.”

Igbo Kennedy

Igbo Kennedy

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