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Raphael Varane responds to Man Utd calls about ‘tentative’ approach



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Raphael Varane has been dropped from Manchester United’s lineup in recent months, causing mass debate and questioning of manager Erik ten Hag.

The United centre-back was key for the team’s successful season last term. They finished third in the Premier League, reached the FA Cup final and won the Carabao Cup.

However, this term injuries have impacted Varane’s campaign from the start and Harry Maguire has taken his opportunity on the right side of the defence.

The English defender was expected to leave the club in the summer but has instead turned things around so far this season. He is keeping Varane out of the team as Ten Hag views both players as right centre-backs.

And reports from Laurie Whitwell of The Athletic have claimed that some close observers of Ten Hag’s team say the Frenchman has been more tentative in his proactive defending this term, seeming to slow down from sprints more carefully, which indicates a caution over his body.

Varane has always been known to be a defender with top speed to sniff out transitional moments and recover from them when needed.

The aforementioned report included the stance from those close to the defender, who argue that he simply needs a run of games to get into a rhythm – which sounds like a completely fair reflection when considering the partnership Varane built with Lisandro Martinez last term.

Despite the noise from outside, claiming that there is a ‘broken’ relationship between player and manager, Ten Hag refuted the idea. “Rapha Varane, I don’t know what you’re talking about — it’s rumours,” he replied when asked about a reported disagreement with the defender this week.

The Athletic added that whilst being out of the side is frustrating Varane, he is not a disruptive presence within the United camp. The club still regard him as a valuable player and, at present, he has shown no indication of wishing to leave Old Trafford despite there being interest from Saudi Arabia and Bayern Munich.