Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Cristiano Ronaldo: Ten Hag puts foot down with humiliating snub as report names Man Utd attack to face Brighton

Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United, during the Premier League match against Watford at Vicarage Road

Cristiano Ronaldo faces a major humbling this weekend as Erik ten Hag lays down the law to the unsettled Manchester United star ahead of Sunday’s Premier League opener against Brighton.

The Portuguese superstar has been the subject of intense speculation this summer amid claims he wants to leave. United’s failure to reach the Champions League, together with a lack of progress on the transfer front, has seemingly convinced the player to move on. But finding a new club for the veteran frontman is not proving an easy course.

Indeed, a number of clubs have since distanced themselves from possible deals. To that end, Atletico Madrid, Chelsea, Bayern Munich and even his first club, Sporting Lisbon, have all ruled out potential deals. There remains offers on the table from oil-rich Saudi Arabian clubs. But Ronaldo’s desire to extend his Champions League goals record will see him snub such offers.

The player finally made his first appearance of the summer on Sunday, playing 45 minutes of a friendly with Rayo Vallecano. However, he seemingly remains determined to quit with a report on Tuesday outlining the heat his agent Jorge Mendes is placing on United.

Ten Hag, though, appears determined to hold on to the player. With only a limited budget to spend this summer, United have seemingly not allocated their cash to spend on a new striker. To that end, Ten Hag still hopes to add a new midfielder in Frenkie de Jong, with a report on Tuesday evening explaining why those hopes were very much alive.

That said, the new United boss does not take kindly to players who are deemed to not have maximum commitment.

As such, a report claims Ten Hag will fire out a humiliating snub to Ronaldo against Brighton on Sunday.

Cristiano Ronaldo destined for Man Utd bench role

With Brighton travelling to Old Trafford for the Premier League opener, Ten Hag will hope to get his reign off to a winning start.

However, The Sun claims Ten Hag will fire out a message to Ronaldo by leaving him on the bench in the game.

They claim Ten Hag has been left angered by Ronaldo’s actions this summer. And that comes amid claims he was uncontactable for three weeks during his push to leave Old Trafford.

Rather than let him walk straight back into the side, Ten Hag will send out a message by sticking Ronaldo among his substitutes.

Man Utd striker Cristiano Ronaldo

Furthermore, the general feeling is that Ronaldo will not have the same match sharpness as his teammates, who all went on tour.

And the paper says Ten Hag will begin with a front three of Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Antony Martial against the Seagulls.

Martial and Sancho have both impressed this pre-season and looking like they have a point to prove. The pair have both scored three goals apiece for Manchester United.

Ronaldo unlikely to take kindly to benching

However, the Portuguese superstar will unlikely take kindly to his snub. When Ten Hag’s predecessor, Ralf Rangnick, did a similar thing back in March, a furious row broke out. That was in the Manchester derby, which Ronaldo was selected to be an impact sub in the game.

United, though, lost 4-1, and Ronaldo was nowhere to be seen; the player developing an injury and flying out to Portugal.

And it is unlikely he will take kindly to his latest humbling either.

It’s important that Ten Hag lays down a marker to his players and proves to them who is boss. But it’s a difficult game to play when it’s Cristiano Ronaldo.

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And if the Dutchman genuinely wants to keep the player, then starting him on the bench is not the way to go about it. To that end, it will only surely hasten his determination to quit.

However, the United boss has to do right by all his players. And it’s fair to say that Martial and Sancho have earned their starts. The Dutchman will also be hoping to get a tune out of Rashford this season after a disappointing 2021/22.

Meanwhile, United are closing on the sale of Eric Bailly. Sevilla lead the charge, though a Premier League new-boy has also reportedly entered the race.