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Henry Winter says Cristiano Ronaldo should be moved out of Old Trafford

by Conner Botterill

Cristiano Ronaldo’s second stay at Manchester United should be brought to an end this summer, according to Henry Winter.

Writing in his column for The Times, Winter suggests the Ronaldo hysteria is something Erik Ten Hag should do without, as he enters his maiden season as United boss.

“Erik ten Hag is the future of Manchester United. Cristiano Ronaldo is the past,” Winter writes.

“If Ten Hag is to manage United freely, and impose his personality and philosophy fully, then Ronaldo has to leave.

“It is actually best for all parties…What sort of message does it send to the younger United players if the new manager picks a player who wants out?

“This can’t go on.”

Ten Hag has overseen a strong pre-season; an interchangeable front three, without Ronaldo, combining to see United impress going forward and score some eye-catching goals in the process.

However, whilst the tour team were ticking along quite nicely on the pitch, there was seismic Cristiano Ronaldo-sized shadow hanging over the club, off it.

Ronaldo’s public desire to leave was a problem Erik Ten Hag was going to have to face upon the return to Manchester – with personal reasons cited as Ronaldo’s tour absence, the inquest was put on hold.

The story is now inevitably back in full flow. Ronaldo seemingly still has desires to leave the club, yet started the last of the warm up games on Sunday.

A player that clearly doesn’t want to be at the club would usually end with only one outcome. But this is Ronaldo.

He wants to bulk his Champions League numbers but almost all of the potential suitors have distanced themselves from the striker.

As it stands, Ronaldo is only at the United because no-one else wants him.

Ronaldo’s obvious influence on his teammates and the football world as a whole means this is an issue that will shackle Ten Hag until sorted, one way or the other.

Ten Hag would need a replacement, United’s attacking options are thin and could do with an addition with or without Ronaldo. The transfer window ends this month and United’s deal-makers face a huge few weeks. The Ronaldo circus is set to rumble on until then.

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