Some Manchester United players requested a day off after losing to Fulham

Manchester United players after losing to Fulham
The Red Devils’ winning run came to an abrupt end on Saturday (Picture: Getty)

A number of Manchester United players tried to get out of training following their Premier League defeat to Fulham but their request for a day off was rebuffed, according to reports.

The Red Devils had won seven straight matches in all competitions prior to hosting Fulham at Old Trafford on Saturday, only to deliver a lethargic and below-par performance.

United were without a number of key players, notably Rasmus Hojlund, and deservedly fell behind in the 65th minute when Calvin Bassey rifled home from close range.

That belatedly sparked some energy and intent from United and they levelled the scores in the last minute of normal time through Harry Maguire, only to be sucker-punched on the break as Alex Iwobi secured all three points for the Cottagers in the 97th minute.

According to The Guardian, in the immediate aftermath of the defeat several United players complained to coaching staff that they wanted Sunday off.

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag
Erik ten Hag was not informed of the request (Picture: Getty)

Manager Erik ten Hag has a very deliberate and meticulous training schedule and players are always asked to come into Carrington after a matchday for warm-downs and video analysis.

But, in amongst a hectic run of games which sees United travel to the City Ground on Wednesday night to face Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup, some players felt they needed a day off.

The request reportedly caused ‘surprise’ particularly after such an insipid display against Fulham and with the players knowing full well what their manager’s normal routine looks like – particularly with such a short turnaround to the next game and recovery being of paramount importance.

Despite the pleas of the players, the request was rejected by staff and the players were ‘reminded of their commitments’.

Interestingly, the players did not go directly to Ten Hag with their request – who is known to be a strict disciplinarian – and the Dutchman is thought to be unaware that a number of members of his squad asked to take the day off.

The request is thought to be linked to previous concerns from senior players that their training schedule is too intense.

Back in November, it was reported that a number of players felt their poor form this season was down to being overworked during pre-season and they were not being afforded enough periods of rest – particularly during busier moments in the season.

After travelling to the City Ground to face Forest in the FA Cup fifth round on Wednesday, United then face a massive – and very challenging – trip to the Etihad stadium on Sunday to take on fierce rivals City in the Manchester derby.

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