Cristiano Ronaldo will be allowed to leave Manchester United this summer by Erik ten Hag, but only if he can find a club to buy him.
Ten Hag will not stand in Ronaldo’s way as the forward tries to force his way out of Old Trafford, although so far United have not been presented with any offers for the Portuguese striker despite his agent Jorge Mendes trying to interest Champions League clubs around Europe. Understandably they are growing increasingly exasperated by the situation given Ronaldo cannot go, despite his agitation, unless there is a buyer.
There is now a sense at United that the 37-year-old is hoping that the club might be prepared to tear up the final year of his contract and allow him to become a free agent.
United are currently insisting that will not happen but, despite their public stance that Ronaldo is not for sale, it is understood they would consider an offer if they receive one before the transfer window closes.
As previously reported by Telegraph Sport, Ten Hag’s position has not changed and has been consistent since he took over as United manager: he has wanted Ronaldo to stay, reasoning it was difficult to replace his goal-threat in a team that needs other areas to be improved but also that the Portuguese superstar had to fit into his style of play and accept that he might not always be in the side, given his age. However if a suitable deal can be agreed Ten Hag will not block it.
There is dismay at how Ronaldo has behaved since he returned to the squad having been granted time off for personal reasons which absented him from United’s pre-season tour.
Ronaldo has made no secret that he wants to leave and his team-mates and United staff are aware of his intentions which, after such a poor start to the season and with the club under pressure, is not helping morale.
Earlier in the summer Mendes held talks with Chelsea co-owner and acting sporting director Todd Boehly but he decided against pursuing a deal with head coach Thomas Tuchel insistent that the club pursue other targets.
Mendes also spoke to Bayern Munich – who similarly decided against making a move – and a number of other leading clubs but despite his efforts there has not been a single offer presented to United.
The club is also waiting to see whether Paris Saint-Germain follow up the talks they held last week with Marcus Rashford’s brother Dwaine, who also represents him, with a formal offer. However they have no intention of allowing the 24-year-old to leave.
The priority for United is signings with Ten Hag pushing for at least three – two midfielders and a forward. United have been linked to a £42.5 million move for the Atletico Madrid forward Matheus Cunha but it is believed a deal for the Brazilian is unlikely with other targets being pursued.
Adrien Rabiot’s mother Veronique, who represents him, is waiting for United to follow up their meeting with her last Friday with further talks over personal terms and signing the midfielder after United struck a £15m deal with Juventus to sign him.