Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has explained why he’s starting Cristiano Ronaldo on the bench against Tottenham Hotspur.

The Red Devils has made one change to the starting line-up that were held to a goalless draw against Newcastle United on Sunday.

Marcus Rashford, who wasn’t fit enough to start against the Magpies, comes into the side with the 37-year-old dropping to the bench.

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The five-time Ballon d’Or winner is yet to start back-to-back games in the Premier League under the former Ajax manager.

With Anthony Martial unavailable and Rashford only able to come off the bench, United’s number seven made his first top-flight start since the chastening 4-0 defeat to Brentford in mid-August against Eddie Howe’s Toon Army.

But with 20 minutes remaining and United chasing a winner, the former Juventus marksman was replaced by Rashford.

Portugal’s captain was far from happy at being replaced and he made his displeasure to the decision made by Ten Hag abundantly clear as he slowly walked to the touchline.

Deep into injury time, Rashford missed the chance of the game after heading wide Casemiro’s outside of the boot cross, and Ronaldo would have likely been thinking that the Reds would have clinched the three points if it was him on the end of his former Real Madrid teammate’s inch perfect cross.

Ten Hag explains why he’s starting Cristiano Ronaldo on bench against Tottenham Hotspur

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Photo by IAN HODGSON/AFP via Getty Images

Speaking to Amazon Prime prior to tonight’s clash against Antonio Conte’s Spurs, Ten Hag said: “You pick the line-up that you think has the most chance to win, and you have the game plan.

“Cristiano [Ronaldo] is an important player and he can make the goal, he will come on and can make the difference.”

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