Manchester United are looking at ways to terminate Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract at the club following his explosive interview with Piers Morgan.
Ronaldo’s interview on TalkTV – will be broadcast in two parts on Wednesday and Thursday – saw the 37-year-old criticize the club and coach Erik ten Hag, for whom the player says he has “no respect”.
Ronaldo also claimed members of the United hierarchy were trying to force him out of Old Trafford and cast doubt on him when he said he couldn’t take part in the pre-season because his daughter was ill in hospital.
United said they would consider their response to Ronaldo’s comments “after the full facts have been established” and released a brief statement on Friday announcing the club had “taken appropriate steps”.
It is now clear that Ronaldo has ‘almost zero chances’ of playing for the club again.
Ronaldo’s key quotes – a snapshot of his full interview
- ‘I feel betrayed by Man Utd | I have no respect for Erik ten Hag’
- ‘Man Utd doubted me because of my sick daughter when I missed pre-season’
- ‘The Glazer family don’t care about Man Utd | United has stopped on a clock’
- ‘Man City move was close but Sir Alex Ferguson changed everything’
- “Young people don’t care, but Diogo Dalot and Lisandro Martinez are different”
- “Roy Keane is the best captain I’ve ever had, but Gary Neville and Wayne Rooney are not my friends”
- “I never saw Ralf Rangnick as a boss | Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has done a good job.
- “I regret leaving Old Trafford for Tottenham – I felt provoked”
- “I turned down a €350 million bid from Saudi Arabia | I don’t know if I’ll still be at Man Utd after the World Cup.
- “I would be happy if Arsenal win the Premier League”
- ‘Lionel Messi is magical | I want to play until I’m 40.
Although United have not set a timeframe for the process, it is believed Ronaldo’s departure should be ‘clean and quick’ and in as dignified a manner as possible – not only to minimize distraction at Old Trafford but also to show respect to Portugal prove during the World Cup.
United do not wish to offer Ronaldo any compensation for his departure and given the willingness of player and club to part ways, it is hoped a solution can be found soon.
It’s not an easy process as Ronaldo’s contract is one of the biggest in the history of the sport.
Sky sports news learned this week that United could not accept some of the criticisms Ronaldo made in the interview.
Ronaldo has slammed the club for a lack of investment in the 13 years since leaving Old Trafford. Sources have insisted United have invested in their facilities – specifically the training ground, restaurant and swimming pool.
The Portuguese striker also criticized Ten Hag but sources insist Ronaldo was treated with respect by the club and manager. In press conferences, Ten Hag always claimed that Ronaldo was given pre-season time off to attend to family matters.
It has been confirmed Sky sports news There was an offer from Saudi Arabia in the summer that United would have accepted but Ronaldo didn’t want to take the step.
There were no other official offers for the player in the last transfer window.
Neville: There’s no going back to Man Utd for Ronaldo but I’m not against him
Sky Sports’ Gary Neville has said there is ‘no going back’ for Ronaldo but insists he is not against his former team-mate.
Neville, who was further criticized himself by Ronaldo during his interview with Piers Morgan TalkTVtold Sky Sports that he cannot see the Portuguese striker play for the club again.
“No, and I don’t think he wants a way back,” Neville said. “He wouldn’t have done this interview if he wanted a way back. He knew it would make the headlines it did and would be the end of his Manchester United career.”
Neville added: “I wonder what Man Utd are doing because the reality is they know they have to put Cristiano out of contract or they’re basically setting a precedent for any player to criticize them in the future.”
Asked for his thoughts and if he was against Ronaldo, Neville replied: “It’s not true what he said, but in love and war anything is fair.
“I live in the game of criticism and I know I have to accept it and I get a lot of it in return. I love all my teammates I’ve played with including Cristiano.
“I’m not against Ronaldo – far from it. I couldn’t have more admiration for him, I couldn’t have more respect for him. He’s the greatest player I’ve ever seen and he’s the most talented player I’ve ever seen have seen.” ever played with it.”