Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Cristiano Ronaldo slammed for ‘childish’ Man Utd strop and told he owes star a ‘big apology’

Jonny Whitfield
Cristiano Ronaldo December 2021

Cristiano Ronaldo needs to apologise to Manchester United team-mate Anthony Elanga following the win over Brentford, according to Paul Merson.

Ronaldo caused a scene on Wednesday evening when he cut a frustrated figure after coming off after 70 minutes. And it is not the first time he has reacted in such a way this season at United.

Indeed, the 36-year-old has been criticised for his body language throughout the season. In fact, Gary Neville slammed Ronaldo as a “whingebag” in December.

The criticism of the Portugal star’s body language has gone hand in hand with questions about Man Utd’s performances.

However, Merson has now argued that the situation on Wednesday was different. The pundit slammed the forward for stealing the headlines for the wrong reasons after youngster Anthony Elanga had scored a landmark goal earlier in the game.

“Cristiano Ronaldo owes Anthony Elanga a big apology,” Merson wrote in Daily Star column.

“What he did against Brentford spoiled the youngster’s big day – and it was so childish.

“The poor kid. He starts his first Premier League game of the season, scores for Manchester United.

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“And then Ronaldo gets substituted, strops off and has a hissy fit. As soon as it happened as I said to my mate: ‘You watch, you won’t even know the kid has scored now.’

“It was unbelievable for someone who’s been around the game that long to do that and take the headlines away from Elanga.”

Ronaldo has had a massive goalscoring impact at times for Man Utd, chiefly in the Champions League. Indeed, he scored a host of late goals to help the Red Devils progress to the knockout stages.


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He had also scored eight goals in 17 Premier League matches heading into Saturday’s clash with Aston Villa.

But Merson insisted that the Brentford game was not one of Ronaldo’s best performances and that he therefore deserved to come off.

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Man Utd manager Ralf Rangnick embracing Cristiano Ronaldo

“He should apologise. One hundred per cent. He should know better,” Merson added.

“He’s sitting there going: ‘Why me? Why me?’ but who else was the manager going to take off?

“Tell me one thing he did well? He was involved in one of the goals. I’ll give him that. But over his whole time on the pitch, it was so poor.”

Bruno Fernandes has also been criticised by another pundit – this time for his performances when he is on the pitch with Ronaldo.