Manchester United forward Cristiano Ronaldo reportedly wants his future sorted before the Red Devils kick off their Premier League season on Sunday afternoon. United welcome Brighton and Hove Albion to the Theatre of Dreams at 14:00 BST on Sunday with Erik ten Hag’s side expected to get their first competitive victory of the season.
The Sun has reported that the 37-year-old is running out of time and it still eager to leave the Old Trafford club despite playing 45 minutes in the final pre-season match of the summer, leaving the stadium before the second half even started. The report has come from Spanish outlet AS. Ronaldo is still seeking UEFA Champions League football.
During the summer, Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes has sought to find interest for the player with the likes of Bayern Munich, Barcelona and even Paris Saint-Germain turning the player down. Mendes has stated that he is doing all he can to engineer a move away from Manchester for his client, despite returning him to the club just under a year ago.
It is for the best that Ronaldo leaves this summer but for that, United would need to sign a striker to full the void he would leave in the team with United not wanting to go into the season with Anthony Martial as the clubs only striker, which would cause any problems, especially if he was to get injured, which has happened regularly.
Chelsea and Napoli were two clubs who held interest in the 37-year-old this summer but they have not put in an offer for the player. Chelsea do need to sign a striker but it is not yet known as to whether United would entertain it, preferring to see the player move overseas. Atlético Madrid were also said to be interested but that has been denied.
The supporters at the Madrid could would not be happy to see him play for them considering his history with Real Madrid and that would possibly discredit his tomato at Real Madrid, if he did sign for their cross-city rivals. It does not seem like there are many options for the aged striker this summer, which will be problematic for him.
United signed him on a two-year contract last summer and will be expecting Ronaldo and Mendes to do all the work into getting him away from Old Trafford as their stance is that he is not for sale. Having paid Juventus £12.85 million for him a year ago, they will be expecting a return on that investment, not that it will be a profit for them.
It would be bad business for United to end his contract at the club based on his demand to continue playing Champions League football. It was part of his responsibility as to why United did not qualify of the competition this season, so he should not be rewarded for that failure as it is on him too.
Bringing the forward back last summer has been a failure. Yes, the player ended last season as the top scorer with 24 goals in all competitions but problems did arise after his arrival, which was either a coincidence or was caused by him, not that this is my judgement – just the options based on what happened. Maybe he will get his wish but it is on him and his agent, not United.
Written by John Walker