Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Ian Wright slams Man Utd star’s behaviour; predicts big implications for the club

James Holland
Former Arsenal striker Ian Wright

Ian Wright says Cristiano Ronaldo’s reaction to being subbed against Brentford is ‘not a good sign’ and could have wider implications for Man Utd.

The Portuguese forward was replaced in the 71st minute at the Brentford Community Stadium as manager Ralf Rangnick aimed to shore up the defence. Club captain Harry Maguire came on in his place, helping the Red Devils to run out 3-1 winners.

But Ronaldo was visibly angry at his substitution, muttering under his breath while walking off the pitch. He also threw his coat down before sitting on the stairs.

Rangnick had a chat with him during the game, presumably to explain the decision.

During a post-match interview, the manager claimed Ronaldo’s reaction is ‘normal’ as he is a striker who just ‘wants to score’. However, Rangnick also spoke about Man Utd’s need to defend their lead, having been 2-0 up at the time.

Responding to the situation, Wright said (via Metro): “You see Ronaldo come off and act like that. You would have thought that’s the last thing he would be doing, that kind of reaction.

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“It’s Ronaldo and that goes worldwide, just seeing sitting there, he didn’t even want to sit on the bench – he sat on the stairs.

“I understand if you’re a youngster and you’ve made your debut, played brilliantly and then come off and do that, I understand that. The manager can say listen, just calm down to him.

“But he’s saying this to Ronaldo, you’re having to plicate him on the bench, in front of the world. That’s not a good sign.”

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Man Utd urged to replace Rangnick

Meanwhile, pundit Frank McAvennie thinks the Red Devils should attempt to capture Antonio Conte from Tottenham.

The Italian was on United’s radar while previous boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer came under pressure. But they did not move in time and the serial winner joined Spurs instead.

Conte seems frustrated with the lack of investment in his team, and McAvennie reckons United should pounce.

“What United need is someone like Fergie. They need someone who can manage everything at the club from the squad to transfers to everything else,” he said.

“It needs to be one man. It didn’t work for Fergie at first, he nearly got sacked right before it started to click. Then look what happened. The discipline was there all the way through the club.

“Can you imagine these players under Fergie? Other than Ronaldo they would all crumble.

“They needed to get Conte when they had the chance, that’s a man you build a club around. That’s exactly what he’s not getting at Tottenham so it wouldn’t surprise me if he left and joined them, quite soon as well.”

United face West Ham on Saturday at 15:00, where they will come up against former manager David Moyes. After that, the Red Devils play Middlesbrough in the FA Cup fourth round on February 4.

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