Cristiano Ronaldo explained one of his infamous Man Utd actions when claiming he was “provoked” by Erik ten Hag who did something he had no right to.
Ronaldo’s return to Old Trafford has devolved into something of a nightmare. The Portuguese was treated to a hero’s reception upon re-joining from Juventus in 2021. However, despite top-scoring for the club with 24 goals across all competitions last season, there was always a sense his situation could implode at any time.
Ronaldo’s reputation as the ultimate professional has since been cast aside by the player himself.
He received a police caution for slapping a mobile phone out of an Everton fan’s hand back in April. He was among eight United stars to leave a pre-season match against Rayo Vallecano early, and later refused to come on as a substitute against Tottenham.
Ten Hag sanctioned Ronaldo for the latter two incidents, while the player’s fortunes on the pitch began to suffer under the Dutchman.
Ronaldo has regularly been overlooked in favour of Marcus Rashford up front. Ten Hag wants a more mobile and harder-working centre-forward who’ll work for the team as much as himself.
What’s more, even when Ronaldo has played, the signs of decline have been evident. He’s lacked his customary clinical edge and his 16 appearances this campaign have returned just three goals.
An exit at some stage in 2023 always looked likely, though Ronaldo’s explosive tell-all interview to TalkTV has ensured he’ll be off one way or another in January.
The interview was staggered over two days and the second brought Ronaldo’s own personal take on the Tottenham incident.
Ten Hag called upon Ronaldo from the bench for the final minutes of their 2-0 victory over Spurs on October 19. Ronaldo snubbed the chance to pull on a Manchester United shirt, instead storming off down the tunnel.
Ronaldo suggested he does regret not coming on as a substitute against Tottenham, though offered dubious reasoning as to why he didn’t.
Ronaldo puts forth baffling explanation
He claimed managers are simply “not allowed” to ask a player of his status to play such a small amount of minutes from the bench. In his words, Ronaldo is “not that kind of player”.
“I will be honest with you, it’s something that I regret, to leave the stadium,” Ronaldo told TalkTV (via the MEN)
“Probably, or maybe no, I don’t know. It’s difficult to tell you 100 per cent but let’s say I regret [it], but in the same way I felt provoked by the coach.
“It is not allowed for a coach to put me in [for] three minutes in a game. Sorry, I’m not that kind of player. I know what I can give to the team.”
While Ronaldo can legitimately stake a claim to being one of the world’s greatest ever players, those comments are an affront to professional footballers across the globe, not least those at United who regularly come off the bench to help the team see out a victory.
One may question the wisdom of Ten Hag’s decision with the scoreline standing at 2-0 at the time of the proposed sub.
Indeed, Ronaldo has never been known for his defensive workrate and he’d do little to pressure the opposition ball carriers as they pile forward late on.
However, as many a manager – including Sir Alex Ferguson – has stated, no player is bigger than the club, including Ronaldo.
Prior to the second half of the interview, one pundit claimed Ronaldo looks “even worse” when compared with a model Liverpool star.
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The article Cristiano Ronaldo blames Ten Hag for doing what’s ‘not allowed’, though does regret infamous Man Utd action appeared first on Teamtalk.com.