Former Chelsea defender Glen Johnson has told Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo to ‘shut up’ following his touchline tantrum against Tottenham last week that saw him leave Old Trafford before the full-time whistle had sounded. Reports are circulating that he will leave the club in January.
Ronaldo was desperate to cut short his homecoming short over the summer, though Erik ten Hag insisted that the forward remained part of his plans. However, to date, that does not appear to be the case.
Marcus Rashford has shone as a No 9 so far this season, with Anthony Martial’s return to form also pushing Ronaldo further down the pecking order. The behaviour of the Portugal international has since called into question whether he is not more of a disruption to have at United than an asset, with Johnson insisting that the player and manager must show a level of respect for one another.
He told Midnite: “Respect is mutual. No player can do what they want, the team is more important than one player, I don’t care who it is. Both Ten Hag and Ronaldo need to show respect to each other, of course, Ronaldo deserves respect for what he’s done. But then he needs to respect his manager.
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“If the team is winning, players who are not playing need to shut up, there’s a time and a place when you’re banging on the manager’s door, and that’s when you’re not playing when the team is losing every week.”
Chelsea have emerged as candidates to sign Ronaldo in the January transfer window, with Todd Boehly desperate to mark his arrival at Stamford Bridge with a marquee signing. The owner held talks with Jorge Mendes, the former Real Madrid star’s agent, ahead of the start of the season but was told by then-manager Thomas Tuchel not to table an offer.
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Despite Ronaldo’s behaviour overshadowing his side’s victory against Tottenham, Ten Hag has insisted that Ronaldo will see out the season under his manager. Speaking about the incident at Old Trafford, Red Devils hero Gary Neville told his podcast that he feels his ex-teammate may be misrepresenting himself to supporters.
He said: “There’s a fine line between a winner and a whiner. And at the moment, he might just be turning the Manchester United fans into thinking he’s whining a little bit and he’s sulking a little bit. We don’t want that for him, he’s too good, he’s the greatest player I’ve ever seen.”