On Friday, Ten Hag said that the England international had missed that day’s training session after calling in sick. Rashford had reportedly travelled to Northern Ireland on Wednesday to link up with his former Red Devils academy team-mate Ro-Shaun Williams, who last week joined Larne.
Later on Friday, images of Rashford allegedly partying in a Belfast nightclub circulated on social media. United responded by insisting that the pictures had been taken on Wednesday night, rather than Thursday, and that the United squad had a scheduled day off the next morning.
However, The Athletic reported that the snaps had instead been shot on Thursday night, the day before Rashford called in sick to United training. Witnesses allegedly saw the 26-year-old partying in the Thompsons nightclub on both Wednesday and Thursday.
Rashford was not selected for United’s visit to Newport in the FA Cup fourth round.
Asked by the BBC about Rashford’s absence prior to kick-off, Ten Hag bluntly said: “He reported ill.”
Pressed further on speculation that Rashford had been partying on Thursday night, the Dutchman added: “It’s an internal matter. I deal with it.”
Asked one more time to elaborate on the situation, Ten Hag appeared to grow frustrated, saying: “Listen, it’s an internal matter. Internal matter.”
United’s squad had been given a week after their 2-2 draw with Tottenham on January 14. Rashford returned to their Carrington base for sessions on Monday and Tuesday.
He reportedly then travelled to Northern Ireland to join close friend Williams, 25, who moved from Doncaster to Larne last week. He was pictured at the club’s training base on Thursday.
In November, Ten Hag reprimanded Rashford for attending a nightclub the evening of a dismal 3-0 defeats by rivals Manchester City at Old Trafford. The United boss was hugely unimpressed and revealed that the player had apologised.
Rashford has endured a tough season this year, failing to build on a campaign in which he bagged a career-best 30 goals. He has scored just four times in 2023-24 and struck at Old Trafford for the first time in seven months when he scored against Spurs earlier this month.