Manchester United statement on Cristiano Ronaldo exit controversy (video)
Cristiano Ronaldo had seen enough from Manchester United vs Tottenham, heading down the tunnel in the 90th-minute in a 2-0 win at Old Trafford on Wednesday.
And now United’s seen enough from him, at least for the weekend. From ManUtd.com:
“Cristiano Ronaldo will not be part of the Manchester United squad for this Saturday’s Premier League game against Chelsea. The rest of the squad is fully focused on preparing for that fixture.”
[ MORE: What we learned from Man Utd 2-0 Spurs ]
Erik ten Hag made the following comments about the Ronaldo saga on Friday, ahead of Saturday’s clash with Chelsea…
“The talk is between Cristiano and me. The statement is clear. It is also in the statement that he remains an important part of the squad. I am the manager, I am responsible for the culture here. I have to set standards and values and have to control them. We are in a team.
“After [he did the same against] Rayo Vallecano [in preseason], I said it was unacceptable, but it wasn’t just him. The second time there has to be consequences. That is what has happened. We miss him tomorrow, that is a miss for us and the squad, but I think it is important for the attitude and mentality of the group and now we have to focus on Chelsea - that is the most important.
Here’s what happened Wednesday: As the stadium celebrated a big win, singing “Fred Will Tear You Apart” to the famous Joy Division tune, Ronaldo couldn’t wait to get into the team room despite the Red Devils holding two more subs in the game.
A report from the Daily Telegraph states that Ronaldo didn’t just walk off the sidelines and down the tunnel, but he walked straight out of the stadium and went home.
Ten Hag tried to push off the reaction after the game to focus on the big three points, saying, “I will deal with that tomorrow, not today. We are now celebrating this victory.”
Understandably it was not something he prefered to talk about after out-foxing Antonio Conte to keep United in the thick of the top-four chase.
This shows that Ronaldo’s reasoning for skipping out early isn’t up to United’s snuff, as Ten Hag did not provide cover for the 37-year-old Portuguese star.
Ronaldo will certainly have known how it would look to leave the match early, especially when there was limited stoppage time and he’d merely have to wait a few minute to appear to be a good member of the team.
United faces old foes Chelsea at the weekend, so this is unneeded drama as fans and pundits would’ve predicted Ronaldo was being saved for the weekend in a congested week of fixtures.