Ralf Rangnick has defended his choice not to play Jesse Lingard in the last home game of the season for Manchester United.
Lingard’s contract expires next month and he is expected to depart United, yet he was not permitted to come off the bench during Monday’s 3-0 victory against Brentford. The 29-year-old was left on the bench by interim manager Ralf Rangnick, prompting his brother, Louie Scott, to call United “classless” in an Instagram post.
Other departing players, like Juan Mata and Nemanja Matic, began the game, while Edinson Cavani and Phil Jones, who are also expected to leave, came off the bench.
Rangnick said: “To start with, in the last couple of weeks under my tenure, Jesse has played far more games than he used to.
“Secondly, on game day against Chelsea, he asked me to release him from the game and training the following day for personal family reasons. With only three subs against Brentford, I had to make a decision between Edinson Cavani and Jesse, or the young Alejandro Garnacho, who I would have loved to have brought on and given a chance to play.
“I took the decision to bring on Edinson. Had I not brought on him, someone might have asked if it was classless not to bring on Cavani or Garnahco. After two subs, you have to make a decision, and this will not be to the liking of everybody, but this is part of the game.
“To be honest, I’m not reading a lot [on social media]. I’ve not had the time in the last six months to read. I’m not on Instagram, I’m not on Facebook, I’m not engaged in those areas. My focus has been to develop the team. In these days, with social media, there’s always somebody posting something and it’s important not to take too much notice of that.”
The Red Devils play Brighton next.