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Saturday, November 26, 2022

Experts criticize Erik ten Hag for dealing with Cristiano Ronaldo

The tense situation surrounding Cristiano Ronaldo and Manchester United has upset some well-known experts in England. However, the focus of criticism is not on the Portuguese superstar, but on United coach Erik ten Hag.

Ronaldo had been provisionally suspended by ten Hag and dropped from the squad for the Chelsea game after the striker refused to come on in the final stages of the game and went into the dressing room early in the win against Tottenham Hotspur (2-0). Ten Hag confirmed the incident, saying the consequences were “important for the mindset and mentality of the group”.

But some experts see things differently. United legend Roy Keane, for example, defended Ronaldo. “I’d be more worried if Ronaldo sat on the bench laughing his ass off every week. The guy loves the club. He’s human, he makes mistakes, he’s frustrated, he’s had enough. Other players have a lot at ManUnited done worse things,” he said Sky Sports.

Rio Ferdinand warned that different rules must apply to a player like Ronaldo. “The way he’s treated is different from everyone else. I’m not saying he was right, but sometimes there are special players in a squad who things work differently for,” said the long-time United defender BT Sports.

Liverpool legend Souness: ‘United are destroying Ronaldo’s legacy’

A legend of Liverpool FC was even clearer. Graeme Souness warned United against destroying CR7’s legacy at the club. “Here is a player who took Manchester United to the top and scored goals for them that will long be remembered. Now look what this club reduced him to. This is a situation entirely caused by United,” wrote he in his column for the Daily Mail.

Ten Hag is responsible for Ronaldo’s behavior against Tottenham. “How did he think the player would react after being asked to sit on the bench, run up the line and warm up, only to be left redundant and unused while the cameras were trained on his every expression?” opines Souness, noting: “If this continues, United will end up destroying Ronaldo’s legacy. The least the club owes him is not to let that happen.”

Ronaldo: Will he go on a free transfer in the winter?

Despite the current situation, ten Hag wants to back Ronaldo after the suspension. “I’m counting on Ronaldo,” he said before the game against Chelsea (1-1). The Dutchman ruled out a longer exclusion of the 37-year-old. “I said I don’t want to be without him, that I want him back in the team because he always has a positive influence on the game,” he said.

However reported ESPN meanwhile that United should even be ready to let Ronaldo go on a free transfer in the winter, although his contract runs until next summer. The background is the club’s hope of being able to save Ronaldo’s salary of 573,000 euros per week – around 15 million euros per half series.


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