Cristiano Ronaldo and Harry Maguire are entangled in a power struggle over the Manchester United captaincy, the UK Sun reports.
It is understood interim manager Ralph Rangnick, Ronaldo and Maguire have had conversations about the England defender relinquishing the armband for the rest of the season.
This is to take the pressure off Maguire as he wrestles with his own loss of form.
But the former Leicester City man is reluctant to do that, because he fears he might lose the captaincy on a permanent basis.
Rangnick has also requested that Ronaldo mentor the young players within the squad, which is understood to have led to further friction with Maguire.
Maguire is said to feel increasingly undermined by Ronaldo’s huge influence within the dressing-room, particularly with the younger players.
There is now a growing belief within the Old Trafford dressing-room that it is inevitable Ronaldo will replace Maguire – who has been struggling for form – as captain.