Edinson Cavani's time at Manchester United in danger of fizzling out
Edinson Cavani’s second season at Manchester United has been frustrating for everyone involved due to the Uruguayan’s fitness struggles.
El Matador had an impressive debut campaign for the Reds where he scored 17 goals and registered 10 assists from 40 games.
However, this season United’s number 21 only has two goals from 15 games.
The former Paris Saint Germain striker has only completed the full 90 minutes on three occasions this season.
With Cristiano Ronaldo in the midst of his longest goalscoring drought since 2009, interim boss Ralf Rangnick doesn’t have the luxury of taking the great Portuguese out of the firing line, due to Cavani’s unavailability.
The Uruguay international picked up a groin injury in training last Friday which ruled him out of the 1-1 draw against Southampton the following day.
Cavani will also miss tonight’s clash against Brighton at Old Trafford.
Rangnick has spoken in more detail about the 35-year-old’s “minor muscle injury” ahead of the game versus Graham Potter’s Seagulls.
Speaking via the club’s official website, the German said: “It is always sad if you have players unavailable, no matter if it is Edinson or another.
“If they are injured, they are injured. If a player says he is not available because he is injured and we do a scan, and realise there is an injury, even if it is a minor muscle injury, if the player says he cannot fully sprint it makes no sense to have them in the squad.”
With the Champions League last-16 first leg against Atletico Madrid looming next week, Rangnick needs his influential and predatory striker fit and firing as the season enters the crucial run-in phase.
Rangnick added: “Yes, I would have loved to have him in the squad and maybe brought him onto the pitch in the second half against Southampton, but it was not possible.
“If it is frustrating or not, it would have been good to have him available. But in the end, he’s old enough – by the way its Edinson’s birthday (yesterday) – I think he is old enough to know if his body is ready in order to play or not.”
There is no denying Cavani will always be a cult hero at Old Trafford, but with him likely to leave the club in the summer when his contract expires, Manchester United desperately need him to shrug off his persistent injury issues for the remaining months of the season.
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