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Cristiano Ronaldo: Gary Neville says there is no way back for forward at Man Utd | Football News


Sky Sports’ Gary Neville says there is “no way back” for Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United after his explosive criticism of the club and manager Erik ten Hag.

Neville, who was himself criticised by Ronaldo during his interview with Piers Morgan on TalkTV, has told Sky Sports he cannot see the Portugal forward playing for the club again.

“No, and l don’t think he wants a way back,” Neville said. “He wouldn’t have done this interview if he wanted a way back. He knew it would bring the headlines it has and be the end of his Manchester United career.”

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Speaking to Piers Morgan on TalkTV, Cristiano Ronaldo said Wayne Rooney and Gary Neville ‘don’t know what is going on’ after he received criticism from both his former team-mates

Manchester United have not yet indicated what action they make take following Ronaldo’s interview.

“I’m wondering what Man Utd are doing because the reality of it is they know they have to terminate Cristiano’s contract or they basically open up a precedent so any player can criticise them in the future,” added Neville.

“I agree with some of the things Cristiano has said and many Man Utd fans will agree with many things Cristiano has said but the reality is if you’re an employee within a business and say those things your employment has to terminate and Man Utd have to do that in the next few days.

“Cristiano probably wants that as well but it didn’t need to end like that. They could have come together a couple of weeks ago and navigated a pathway through what could have potentially been choppy seas to the shore but it’s not happened, they’ve both basically backed themselves into a corner.”

What did Ronaldo say about Neville and Rooney?

“People can have their own opinions.

“They don’t really know what’s going on at the training ground, they have to listen to my point of view as well. It’s easy to criticise if they don’t know the whole story.

“They are not my friends, they are colleagues. We played together but we’re not having dinner together. It’s part of my journey, they keep criticising me with negativity every time. I can continue my trip and I have to catch up with people who like me.”

‘Exits don’t have to happen this way’

Ronaldo, who re-joined United in August 2021 and finished as their top scorer in all competitions last season with 24 goals, asked to leave the club in the summer.

But he remained at Old Trafford ahead of the 2022/23 campaign and told Morgan he felt “betrayed” by United for trying to force him out this term.

Neville said: “There was probably another way to do it but that was from the club’s side and Cristiano’s side.

“When I had that debate in the studio after the Chelsea game three or four weeks ago with Roy Keane, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and Dave Jones, I urged Man Utd and Cristiano to come together that week because it was obvious the relationship was failing or had failed and to navigate a pathway to January or the World Cup where they created a truce. Exits don’t have to happen this way if both sides are proactive and mature. I’m disappointed that meeting doesn’t seem to have happened.

“Cristiano hasn’t been controlled or managed, it doesn’t look like he’s reached out to the club and opened communication lines. We’ve ended up with this quite unsavoury situation whereby it looks like Cristiano is going to end this period of his reign at Man Utd in not a great a feeling as it should be.

“He’s one of the greatest players ever to play the game in the world and certainly one of Man Utd’s greatest ever players.

“As a fan it doesn’t feel right that someone I played with needs to leave the club in this way, or the club need to end it this way.”

Nev: Ten Hag has handled situation perfectly

Ronaldo was dropped by United manager Erik ten Hag for last month’s 1-1 draw with Chelsea for refusing to be brought on as a late substitute in the 2-0 home win over Tottenham and for leaving Old Trafford early.

The 37-year-old said he has “no respect” for Ten Hag because he “doesn’t show respect for me”, but Neville believes the Dutchman has handled the situation “perfectly”.

Neville said: “I think Erik ten Hag has handled a very difficult first six months at United perfectly. I don’t think he could have done anything differently.

“Cristiano Ronaldo’s a monster of a player, a monster of a character, with a massive reach. He’s been in a bit of a difficult position because if he publicly takes him on, he’s probably not going to win.

“Privately, we know he has problems with Ronaldo because he keeps leaving him out. But Ronaldo, Ten Hag, the executives, sporting directors, owners, they should have got in a room a few weeks ago and said, ‘We don’t respect each other, we don’t like each other, we don’t want this to continue so let’s end it properly’. They’ve not done that – there’s not been proactive leadership. They’ve shied away from it thinking it’s going to be OK but that doesn’t happen in football, particularly when you’re dealing with such a big character. Ronaldo’s not going to accept that.

“When you’re a player, you do suffer from a bit of paranoia at times, when you think everyone’s against you. Not everyone’s against Ronaldo. In fact, he’s much loved in this city. Even if people are offering criticism of him, deep down they will still have enormous respect and love for him as a player, and for what he’s done for the game.

“Cristiano looks like someone who thinks the world’s against him – it doesn’t have to be like that. The club need to reach out to Cristiano and his advisers and navigate a way this ends very quickly. It’s becoming more unsavoury by the day and there’s no need for it to be like that.”

More to follow…

Piers Morgan Uncensored: 90 Minutes with Ronaldo continues on TalkTV on Thursday at 8pm.



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