Ronaldo could say goodbye to Manchester United this summer
Stories about Cristiano Ronaldo’s new clubs are traditionally in demand in the media. When he first left Real Madrid for Juventus, the Turin side earned around €55 million on T-shirts bearing his surname. This time, rumors of the Portuguese’s impending departure from Manchester United began to emerge.
PSG, Bayern and the Saudi club
Two rumors concerning Cristiano began to develop in parallel in the summer – that he was missing Manchester United training one after the other and that the player’s agent was looking for a new club for his client.
An interim summary of the epic with the Portuguese’s future in early July was summed up by insider Fabrizio Romano: Ronaldo loves the team and believes that Eric ten Hague can build a really strong team. But the problem is the club’s transfer policy – the forward does not believe United will be in the top positions without significant reinforcements and believes the club should sign up to seven quality players. Cristiano’s agent is in talks with a number of teams – Bayern, Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain are on the list. At the time, it was reported that none of them were ready to give a specific offer. The Munich-based side has no intention of meeting the 37-year-old striker’s large wage demands and is not sure he can put the club’s interests ahead of his own. In the case of Chelsea, the reason for the refusal is that the transfers were allowed to be managed by head coach of the Londoners Thomas Tuchel – it is he who will decide who will strengthen the Blues this summer.
Against this background, on July 4 it became known that the Portuguese forward does not take part in the team’s pre-season training camp “due to family reasons”. He has not appeared at the squad of MJ until now.
The situation was explained by the English grandee midfielder Bruno Fernandes:
I don’t know what Ronaldo said to the club and the coach. I don’t know what’s going on in his head and whether he wants to go. I didn’t ask him about that. From everything we know, he has some family problems, and we respect his private life, we do not bother him, that’s all. When he didn’t show up to practice, I just asked him if everything was normal in the family. He explained to me what was going on and that was it.
It was also reported today that Ronaldo is willing to take a 30 percent wage cut at his new club, his agent Jorge Mendes has told the teams bidding for the player.
New MJ coach thinks it will work out
Ten Hague remains hopeful that working with Cristiano will still work out:
“I have demands on pressing, we want to play a certain way. I think Ronaldo can do it. He has already proved everything during his career.
The Dutch specialist’s desire is understandable – the Portuguese was United’s top scorer in the English Premier League last season with 18 goals in 30 games. The Mancunians do not have many players at the center-forward position (Ronaldo and Marcial), so dividing playing time between them is not such a difficult task.
At the same time, according to media reports, Marcial and Harry Maguire will be upset by Cristiano’s return. In the case of the Frenchman, the problem is the playing time, while the Englishman is annoyed that the Portuguese undermines his status as leader. The situation is more like a tug-of-war – in this case it matters what the coach decides. For Ten Hague, it will be his first serious test at the English grand club – he must now get along with the real stars.
Ronaldo’s problem could be solved with substitutions and changes in formation
The optimal scenario for Manchester United’s match against Brentford in the 35th round of the English Premier League is that Ronaldo started that match in the opening minutes, and after Cavani came on the pitch, he shifted to the left to receive the ball at half-back. If you try to divide the time between Marcial and Cristiano in a similar way, both would get playing practice. But Ronaldo’s age won’t allow him to do his usual amount of work, so the role of center-forward remains preferable for him.
The option of leaving United is not strongly believed – recent insiders show that the star player’s candidacy for reinforcements is now viewed with caution. As a result, it could turn out that the Portuguese will return to the Mancunians’ location without having received an offer from another club. But the relationship with the team will be irrevocably damaged – a situation echoing Pogba’s case, when the atmosphere at United was terrible.
Former United footballer Gary Neville has questioned Cristiano’s very return to the team:
I think the arrival of Ronaldo was immediately a problem for Cavani. Edinson wanted terribly to lead the attack, but when the club signed Ronaldo, Cavani was crushed. Naturally, Cristiano’s return had a negative impact on Maguire, making it harder for him to carry the status of captain, even if Ronaldo did nothing. His very presence on the pitch means that everyone is looking at Cristiano, while in the meantime Harri is trying to convince everyone that he deserves to be the captain of MJ.
In fact, Ronaldo’s return to MJ sowed discord from the start – the team lacks a 100% leader whose status everyone would agree with, now the team is once again drowning in conflict. Recent actions only increase the effect of the gap – the club will not become united. In such realities, another difficult season awaits the Mancunians.