Cristiano Ronaldo leaves Manchester United

Cristiano Ronaldo leaves Manchester United
Cristiano Ronaldo leaves Manchester United

Cristiano Ronaldo leaves Manchester United

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Cristiano Ronaldo’s last appearance for Manchester United was the 3-1 defeat by Aston Villa on 6 November.

Portuguese striker Cristiano Ronaldo has left Manchester United following a heated disagreement with manager Eric ten Hag.

The decision came after a controversial TV interview in which the 37-year-old criticized the club and said he had “no respect” for coach Erik ten Hag.

Both parties stated that Ronaldo’s departure was “by mutual consent of both sides”.

A statement from Manchester United read: “The club thanks him for his tremendous contribution during his two seasons at Old Trafford.”

The club wishes him and his family all the best for the future. “Everyone at Manchester United remains focused on continuing the progress of the team under Erik ten Hag and working together to succeed on the pitch.”

United finished fifth in the Premier League in Ten Hag’s first season as manager and are now on the break of the season, which coincides with the World Cup in Qatar.

Ronaldo is playing with his country Portugal at the World Cup in Qatar and is expected to lead them in the opening Group H game against Ghana next Thursday.

Speaking to the media in Qatar on Monday, Ronaldo said he would speak whenever he wanted and that his dispute with United would not ‘rock’ the Portuguese side into the tournament.

Ronaldo has scored 145 goals in 346 games for United. And he had left Juventus, Italy, to join United again in August 2021, 11 years after he first left United to join Real Madrid.

Just over seven months remained before Ronaldo’s £500,000-a-week contract with United expired. His departure from the club frees him up to sign with another club at the start of the January transfer window.

“Following talks with Manchester United, we mutually agreed to terminate our contract early,” Ronaldo said.

“I love Manchester United and I love the fans and that will never change. However, it seems the right time for me to look for a new challenge.”

“I wish the team all the best for the rest of the season and for the future.”

Controversial TV interview

Ronaldo has not played for United due to an unspecified illness, it has been revealed, since he captained the team in the 3-1 defeat by Aston Villa on November 6.

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Ronaldo said his rift with United would not ‘shake’ Portugal’s World Cup squad in Qatar.

Ronaldo was banned from attending the Premier League game against Chelsea by Ten Hag last month after refusing to come as a substitute against Tottenham three days earlier.

In an interview with British TV last week, Ronaldo said he had no regrets not being brought on in the closing minutes of the game against Tottenham because he felt Ten Hag had ‘provoked’ him.

He said he felt “cheated by the club” adding along with his view on Ten Hag that he felt forced out of the club.

Ronaldo also said he has seen “no development” at the club since former manager Sir Alex Ferguson stepped down in 2013.

United responded with a statement last Friday saying they had “taken reasonable steps” in response.

Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand told BBC Sport: “Cristiano obviously went into this interview with the mentality that he’s not happy and wants to leave the club. He made that very clear.”

“I think Erik ten Hag got what he wanted in this situation too. Both sides are happy and we can continue.”

“We don’t know Cristiano’s next step. It depends on his motives. To play in the Champions League? The money? To continue playing somewhere in a comfortable climate?”

“We’ll know in time, I’m sure.”

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