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Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has made a decision on the club’s captaincy for the upcoming season.
And it is bad news for current incumbent Harry Maguire, who has been stripped of the captaincy by his manager.
The central defender was handed the Red Devils armband by previous boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer three-and-a-half years ago, but that spell has now come to an end.
Maguire stripped of Manchester United captaincy
The England international has been strongly linked with a move away from Old Trafford this summer, with those links set to intensify following this latest decision from Ten Hag.
Maguire has now taken to social media to express both his disappointment at the decision and his gratitude at having been handed the role in the first place.
“After discussions with the manager today he has informed me he is changing captain,” Maguire wrote on Twitter. “He outlined his reasons to me and whilst I’m personally extremely disappointed, I will continue to give my all every time I wear the shirt.
“So I wanted to say a massive thank you to the Manchester United fans for all their brilliant support whilst I’ve been wearing the armband. Since the day I took on the role, three-and-a-half years ago, it’s been a huge privilege to lead Manchester United and one of the proudest moments of my career to date.
“It’s one of the greatest honours in club football. I’ve done everything I possibly could to help United be successful – on and off the field. I will always be grateful to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for first giving me the responsibility and I wish whoever now takes it on every success and they will have my full support. Harry.”
Next Manchester United captain odds
Two big questions will arise from this decision from Manchester United boss Ten Hag, the first of which being what will happen to Maguire ahead of the new Premier League campaign.
The defender largely watched on from the bench last season as talented duo Lisandro Martinez and Raphael Varane stole the show at centre-back.
And that is a scenario that looks certain to continue in the upcoming season, with Maguire set to be limited to appearances in the likes of the FA Cup, League Cup and in Europe once again.
But the other important decision that must be made at Old Trafford is who Maguire will hand the armband over to.
According to the Evening Standard, midfield maestro Bruno Fernandes is strong favourite to take over the Manchester United captaincy at 1/2.
Relatively new face and fellow midfielder Casemiro is 7/2, with star attacker Marcus Rashford currently sitting at 5/1.
And Maguire’s fellow central defenders Martinez and Varane find themselves next on the list, with the former 12/1 to become captain and the latter 16/1.
Central midfielder Scott McTominay meanwhile is also in contention at 25/1, despite being rumoured with an Old Trafford exit this summer.
It’s a very significant role at the Manchester outfit, with many club legends being handed the honour over the years.
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