Erik ten Hag has reportedly already met with club officials over Cristiano Ronaldo’s explosive TV interview after advising the best course of action of the veteran star’s Manchester United future.
Ronaldo has released a ‘warts and all’ interview with TV personality and journalist Piers Morgan that absolutely destroys all involved with Manchester United. Speaking without restrictions, Ronaldo has criticised Ten Hag, the United players, the Glazer family and the club as a whole. Even poor old Gary Neville and Wayne Rooney found themselves on the received end of his vitriolic tongue.
Having released the interview in sections in the media, the full interview was broadcast on Wednesday night. And it is safe to say that Ronaldo has, most likely, played his final game for the club.
Indeed, theories has begun on how United will handle the saga. They issued a statement in the immediate aftermath of the first interview and reportedly held talks that day.
In addition, reports have suggested that United will likely tear up his contract and effectively sack the player. That decision will ultimately come down to executive co-chairman Joel Glazer. And per reports on Wednesday, Glazer is currently going through the player’s contract with lawyers as they seemingly look to call time on his £500,000 a week deal.
Quite where Ronaldo will end up next is anyone’s guess. A string of top clubs are quickly distancing themselves from the prospect of signing the veteran star. Indeed, Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Napoli and Atletico Madrid all seem dead against signing the star.
TEAMtalk, however, exclusively revealed before the interview came to light that Sporting Lisbon – the player’s first club – had performed a U-turn over his future.
And one trusted Sky Sports reporter has since backed up that story, suggesting Lisbon look a likely option.
Ten Hag decides on Ronaldo future
With Glazer currently looking at ways at ending his deal, reports claim United boss Ten Hag has already made clear his feelings on the matter.
And as per ESPN, Ten Hag has told United’s owners that Ronaldo can never play for the club again and that he will not select him for United ever again.
The Dutchman feels that the damage done by the interview means it will be impossible to reintegrate the 37-year-old into the squad. Furthermore, a number of senior United players are reportedly furious at Ronaldo for giving the interview.
And while Ten Hag feels that a fit and fully-focused Ronaldo could have been used by United in the second half of the season, he is not now willing to give him that chance following the interview.
Ten Hag reportedly feels that the damage done by Ronaldo is now too great. As such, he has seemingly advised Glazer with a savage two-word message: Get rid.
In addition, Ten Hag is prepared to let Ronaldo leave on a free, even if United are unable to secure a replacement.
They are reportedly considering a number of options to replace him. However, any signing may have to wait until the summer. Per reports on Wednesday, though, United are readying a bid of £60m for one possible option.
Gary Neville mocks Ronaldo as Gary Lineker reacts
Following the interview’s release on Wednesday night, a number of high-profile media figures have offered their thoughts.
Branding the interview ‘extraordinary’, Gary Lineker reckons the star has burned his bridges at United.
The Match of the Day host tweeted: “Can’t see @Cristiano at Old Trafford for long.
“Burying pretty much everyone at the club in his interview with @piersmorgan: the players, the staff, the coaches, the board. Extraordinary!’
And while some supporters backed Ronaldo for his attack on the club, the final word goes to Gary Neville.
The Sky Sports pundit and former teammate of Ronaldo was savagely taken to the cleaners by Ronaldo.
However, as the interview was about to air, Neville tweeted: “Tune in for a ‘world exclusive’ at 8pm tonight. Salford City v Peterborough in the FA Cup on ITV4, channel 120.”