Cristiano Ronaldo hasn’t had quite the homecoming he hoped for when he joined Manchester United from Juventus last year. The Red Devils crashed out of the Champions League early last season and only qualified for the Europa League. It’s safe to say Ronaldo isn’t used to playing on Thursday nights.
After notching 18 goals in 30 appearances in the Premier League last season, Ronaldo has yet to find his footing under new manager Erik Ten Hag. The Dutch manager has used him as a substitute in the Premier League and typically only starts the Portuguese forward in cup or Europa League competitions.
Ronaldo has only started two Premier League matches under Ten Hag. Most notably in a shocking 4-0 defeat to Brentford in August which saw the team run the 13.8 kilometers they were outrun by the next morning. Ten Hag did join in for good measure.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner said he wants to play Champions League football now. His time in Manchester could be coming to an end.
Most recently, Erik Ten Hag said that Ronaldo refused to come on as a substitute in United’s 2-0 victory over Tottenham Hotspur.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) October 19, 2022
Ronaldo then left the match early in the 89th minute. Ten Hag said that the 37-year-old has been dropped from the squad ahead of United’s clash with Chelsea on Saturday.
He was forced to train alone following the incident.
Ten Hag noted that Ronaldo had already been warned following a similar incident in the preseason. He was spotted leaving Old Trafford early during a friendly with Rayo Vallecano.
Ten Hag said it’s up to him to create a top sports culture. This punishment was the best way to do that, he added
Rumors have been swirling around Ronaldo’s departure ever since the arrival of Erik Ten Hag. He could leave Manchester as soon as January in the next transfer window.
Next for Ronaldo and United
Ronaldo is expected to rejoin the squad on Monday ahead of United’s Europa League tie with FC Sheriff.
Manchester United will visit Stamford Bridge to take on Chelsea on October 22.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) October 21, 2022