Cristiano Ronaldo has shocked supporters and pundits alike after appearing on Piers Morgan Uncensored and giving an explosive interview during which he expressly criticises the club for what he terms a ‘betrayal’.
Ronaldo, who didn’t take part in Manchester United’s 2-1 win over Fulham on Sunday, admitted that he ‘doesn’t respect’ manager Erik ten Hag, explaining: “I don’t have respect for him because he doesn’t show respect for me. If you don’t have respect for me, I’m never gonna have respect for you.”
The 37-year-old also criticised Ralf Rangnick, Wayne Rooney and others in the bizarre interview, one which has made an upcoming exit from Old Trafford look all the more certain. The club are ‘furious’ with the player for the outburst.
Here are just some of the strong reactions to Ronaldo’s quotes.
Jamie Carragher, for example, believes that even as popular as Ronaldo is among Manchester United fans, almost everyone will now firmly side Erik Ten Hag given the pettiness of the player’s behaviour. The improvement shown under Ten Hag’s management so far this season probably helps, too.
Carragher also went on to Tweet that Roy Keane, Rio Ferdinand and Patrice Evra probably fall into the 1% that will defend their former teammate.
Journalist Melissa Reddy believes it is in fact Ronaldo who is guilty of betraying the club, not the other way round, given the way that he has attempted to undermine the Ten Hag regime despite the club trending in a positive direction.
Henry Winter believes that despite valid points brought up about the standards and facilities at the club, Ronaldo is now essentially an unwanted distraction and Manchester United are simply “moving on.”
There were, however, some accounts who appeared to take Ronaldo’s side in the matter.
Piers Morgan, perhaps unsurprisingly, tweeted that Ronaldo’s criticisms of Manchester United were “spot on”, citing United’s league position in fifth and the fact they are only in the Europa League rather than the Champions League.
The Guardian’s Barney Ronay replied that the signing of Ronaldo in the first place is probably a large reason for this.
And the point is made even more succinctly by writer David Scott.
90min’s own Scott Saunders makes the observation that Ronaldo has now probably done the club a favour, all things considered, writing “He doesn’t realise he’s a problem himself.”
While Scott Patterson believes Ten Hag has been far from disrespectful in the way that he has treated Ronaldo, particularly when you take into account Ronaldo refusing to play and leaving the ground early.
But perhaps Chris Sutton summarised it best with the following Tweet and the point that Ronaldo ‘isn’t the player he once was and simply can’t accept that’.
We’ll forgive you for the typo by the way, Chris.
And look away now if you’re a Chelsea fan, as the list of clubs that would both a) want to and b) be able to actually afford Ronaldo shrinks by the day.