Manchester United striker Cristiano Ronaldo is looking to leave the club in January.
According to The Telegraph’s Jason Burt in a bombshell exclusive, the 37-year-old is eager to depart Old Trafford in search of first-team minutes and Champions League football.
As per Burt, while Erik ten Hag was initially reluctant to let the striker go, the Dutch boss will not stand in Ronaldo’s way should a suitable offer arrive.
Burt reports, “As Ten Hag held an inquest at United’s Carrington training on Monday in which players and staff were encouraged not to pull any punches about Sunday’s shambolic 6-3 defeat to Manchester City, Ronaldo’s future was again in the spotlight after he was left on the bench.”
“Ten Hag has trodden carefully whenever the subject of Ronaldo is raised, but it is believed the United manager is open to letting the 37-year-old leave in the winter window if an acceptable offer is made.”
“Having wanted to keep Ronaldo when he first took over, Ten Hag has been more relaxed about him leaving ever since the player made it clear he wanted to go.”
Should Ronaldo proceed with his efforts to leave in January, this would not represent the first time he has tried to do so in recent memory.
The five-time Ballon D’or winner was hellbent on leaving the 20-time English champions in the summer but was unsuccessful in his attempts.
The only club that was seriously interested in him was the Saudi club Al Hilal.
With Anthony Martial back from injury, it is likely that Ronaldo’s minutes will become even more limited.
Even in the absence of the Frenchman, who is Ten Hag’s chosen one to spearhead his attack, the manager preferred to deploy Marcus Rashford. The latter is predominantly a winger in the striker position, in a show of no confidence to the former Real Madrid star.
United have come under fire for their treatment of Ronaldo from sections of the fanbase and the media. Club legend and former captain Roy Keane criticized the club for disrespecting one of the greatest players of all time.
However, it would be hard to argue against the player getting his move should one become feasible. It would be in the interest of all parties and would stop the never-ending debates regarding his role in an underperforming side.