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.
Ronaldo “I don’t respect the manager”
Ronaldo under ETH: Announced he wanted to leave, refused to come on as a substitute, walked off the bench & left before the game had finished.
99% of United fans will be on the side of ETH, which shows how badly Ronaldo has handled this.
— Jamie Carragher (@Carra23) November 13, 2022
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.
Manchester United’s prep for the season, formative months of Erik ten Hag’s reign, the new culture being created, their most complete display (v Spurs) in ages, the high of a future star scoring a late winner, the collective… all undercut by Cristiano Ronaldo. That’s betrayal
— Melissa Reddy (@MelissaReddy_) November 14, 2022
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.”
Cristiano Ronaldo is the past, Erik ten Hag the future. Ronaldo makes some legitimate points in his Morgan i/v about #MUFC facilities & standards. But ETH addressing the latter, team showed their spirit without CR7 at FFC, have a huge prospect in Garnacho and are moving on. 1/2
— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) November 14, 2022
There were, however, some accounts who appeared to take Ronaldo’s side in the matter.
Whatever Team Cristiano Ronaldo plays for, I will support!!! Til he decides to retire. My loyalty is with him!
In the world of Football, Cristiano shows the way, I follow.
Sorry I’m not sorry.
— MrMacaroni (@mrmacaronii) November 14, 2022
To the United fans who may have a short memory.
When Ronaldo was linked to City, you guys were SEETHING!
You all begged him to come back, knowing his age, knowing he wasn’t the player he once was.
He scored 18 PL goals in his first season back.
Grow up. Respect your GOAT. pic.twitter.com/5RVIEAZZJj
— Barstool Football (@StoolFootball) November 13, 2022
A legend of the club, greatest of all time, you disrespected him & you don’t want him to talk.
Ronaldo has nothing to lose in football anymore & he must be treated with the utmost respect.
You prevented him from leaving & you want to disrespect him? NEVER
— POOJA!!! (@PoojaMedia) November 14, 2022
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 re-signing Ronaldo is a major symptom of this, not the cure. He is essentially complaining about himself
— Barney Ronay (@barneyronay) November 14, 2022
And the point is made even more succinctly by writer David Scott.
Ronaldo is right, United have invested in the wrong areas for far too long. Paying him £500k a week at his age is a prime example of that.
— Scotty (@arghkid) November 13, 2022
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.”
Ronaldo’s done everyone a massive favour with that interview.
Solved the problem of him being in the team & spoken out against the running of the club as it’s in the process of being fixed.
He doesn’t realise he’s a problem himself.
— Scott Saunders (@_scottsaunders) November 13, 2022
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.
Ronaldo refused to play and left the ground while the game was still on. In response, Ten Hag totally disrespected him by… bringing him back in to the starting XI and making him captain? 🤷️ You’ve had an absolute mare Ronnie lad.
— Scott Patterson (@R_o_M) November 14, 2022
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’.
When Ronaldo returned he thought he was bigger than Manchester United… no player is bigger than the club. A very sad end. He simply isn’t the player he once was and can’t except that. He’s shown once again he isn’t a team player…
— Chris Sutton (@chris_sutton73) November 14, 2022
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.
It would be absolutely bonkers for any serious club to sign Cristiano Ronaldo in January and that is why I’d wager serious dough that Chelsea will sign Cristiano Ronaldo in January.
— Rory Jennings 🦩 (@Chelsearory) November 13, 2022