The behaviour of Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United this season has even got on the nerves of one of his most legendary former teammates, with Wayne Rooney joining the criticism of the sulking striker.
Cristiano Ronaldo wanted to leave Manchester United in the summer, but was unable to find anyone willing to take on his huge wages. Hence, his second spell with the Red Devils entered a second season. Although it has not been without its fair share of drama.
Ronaldo has been the centre of attention on a number of occasions, but not necessarily for what he has been doing on the pitch. Indeed, he has only scored once in the Premier League this season.
Erik ten Hag has rarely made Ronaldo a starter, and the striker has not taken to it well. Recently, he refused to come off the bench for one match and ended up leaving early.
His punishment was to be omitted from their next squad entirely, although he has since been back in action.
Still, the topic of a January transfer exit has not been too far behind the five-time Ballon d’Or winner. TEAMtalk recently looked at five reasons why Ronaldo still wants out of Old Trafford.
Other pundits have urged the club to get rid of him six months before his contract will expire. A separation could be in everyone’s best interests.
Now, Ronaldo’s ex-strike partner from his first spell with Manchester United, Wayne Rooney, has voiced his concerns about how the Portugal ace has been acting this season.
Rooney labels Cristiano Ronaldo behaviour as ‘not acceptable’
Claiming United are not a better team with Ronaldo in, Rooney told talkSPORT: “Him and Messi are arguably the two best players of all time and you can go either way with that, whatever way you decide.
“But I just think the things he has done from the start of the season, it is not acceptable for Manchester United. I’ve seen Roy Keane defending him. Roy wouldn’t accept that. Roy wouldn’t accept that at all.
“It is a distraction which Manchester United don’t need at the minute, trying to rebuild.
“For Cristiano, just get your head down and work and be ready to play when the manager needs you. If he does that, he will be an asset. If he doesn’t, it will become an unwanted distraction.”
The distraction of Ronaldo’s future may still be looming over Manchester United. But many believe manager Ten Hag has been handling the situation well.
Rooney is among his supporters, backing the authority the Dutchman has shown with the Ronaldo issue. Furthermore, he believes the manager is creating the most positive atmosphere the club have felt in a while.
Ten Hag showing strength
Rooney added: “I think Ten Hag has done really well, he’s come in and stamped his authority on the team, and for the first time in about two or three years I’m starting to see an identity with Manchester United which I haven’t seen in the last two of three years.
“He’s shown his strength and his character with how he dealt with Cristiano [Ronaldo] at times with the stuff he’s been up to.
“He’s the right man for the job. I think it will take time but it’s a real step in the right direction to finish in that top four and get Champions League football again.”
The ex-captain continued: “To be honest, I haven’t met him.
“I had Steve McClaren at Derby who I know well and has gone in there, and I’m very close with Darren Fletcher. So I know what he’s doing and how he’s going about his work.
“I know the players and staff are a lot happier than they have been over the last couple of years.”
Things seem to be looking up for the long-term future of Manchester United. But still, the feeling that Ronaldo might not be around for much more of it persists.
READ MORE: Ten Hag sent glowing endorsement over complete striker solution for Man Utd, but ominous warning issued
The article Cristiano Ronaldo becoming ‘unwanted distraction’, as Rooney slams ‘not acceptable’ behaviour and sides with Ten Hag appeared first on Teamtalk.com.