Manchester United striker Cristiano Ronaldo has no doubt he still has the ability to play at an elite level and didn’t leave Old Trafford in the summer as he “feels comfortable”, not because he had no offers…
Ronaldo has started the season very slowly after a solid 2021-22 campaign back at Old Trafford.
He could not lead the Red Devils to the top four or a trophy, however.
And with United back in the Europa League, it has been a difficult season for the 37-year-old.
In ten Premier League matches this term, Ronaldo has only scored once.
And with the World Cup break underway, a bombshell of an interview with Piers Morgan has dropped this week.
Ronaldo was heavily critical of manager Erik ten Hag as well as the infrastructure of the club.
A huge talking point was the player’s future at Old Trafford.
Despite admitting it will be “hard” to leave the Premier League club, a January exit is inevitable and what Ronaldo wants, and surely what United want with what he has said to Morgan.
Multiple reports in recent months have said that no club showed any concrete interest in the Portugal captain.
Bayern Munich sold Robert Lewandowksi and opted not to replace him at all, even with Ronaldo available on the market.
This has begged the question: Is Ronaldo good enough to play for a top team?
He, obviously, strongly believes he is.
Asked if he can still play at an elite level despite turning 38 in February, Ronaldo told Morgan: “For me it’s a stupid question. What do people say? They are not the same. Nobody is the same. Day by day we’re getting old. Every one of us, you understand, it is normal.
“You have to adapt. And I think nobody in this game have this brain that adapts with his age. I don’t want to be cocky to say that I’m the same as when I was 20. Of course, no.
“But I adapt and be smart to know my strength, what I’m good to do. And I’m still playing the high level and I score goals, and I will continue to score goals if my mind is clear and happy.
“If the people surround me, they’re helping me to be a successful player, especially the coach, the president, the directors… But when you feel that the energy don’t go surround you it’s difficult for you to be yourself, which is what’s happened with me.”
It looked as though Ronaldo had little choice but to stay at United in the summer as his only offer came from Saudi Arabia, but that’s “complete garbage”.
“But what they say the last three months is completely garbage and wrong. They say that they offer me this and that, and many presidents and directors speak about, they reject me.
“It’s a complete lie, they lie. Because this is not what’s happened. I have many clubs, not many, a few clubs that they want me to sign and I didn’t go because I feel comfortable here. This is the truth.”
Portugal captain Ronaldo reckons this could be his final World Cup and has said he is aiming to retire at the age of 40.
“I want to play two years more, three years more. So two or three years maximum,” he said.
“I want to finish with 40. I think 40, will be a good age. But I don’t know, I don’t know the future.
“Sometimes you plan one thing for your life and as I told many times, the life is dynamic. And you never know what’s going to happen.”
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