Home » Thomas Zilliacus: Man United bidder praises Erik ten Hag’s handling of Cristiano Ronaldo

Thomas Zilliacus: Man United bidder praises Erik ten Hag’s handling of Cristiano Ronaldo

by Derick Kinoti

Prospective Manchester United buyer and Finnish entrepreneur Thomas Zilliacus has praised Erik ten Hag’s delicate handling of Cristiano Ronaldo.

It’s a well-known fact that Ten Hag and Ronaldo had a fractious relationship and the pair were not on the best terms.

Things however took a turn for the worst when the Portugal captain granted an explosive interview to British broadcaster Piers Morgan where he accused Ten Hag of disrespecting him and trying to force him out of the club.

Ten Hag, not one to be disrespected by a player, took the decision in consultation with other senior club executives to prematurely end Ronaldo’s tenure as a United player.

The 38-year-old and the Red Devils mutually agreed to a parting of ways and Ronaldo joined Saudi Arabia’s Al-Nassr.

Zilliacus spoke to NOS via SportWitness and expressed his satisfaction with the job Ten Hag is doing.

The businessman remarked that if his United bid proves successful, the Dutchman will be allowed to build on the positive strides he has already taken in his new job.

Zilliacus said, “From what I’ve seen, he’s a brilliant manager. What he did with Ajax was amazing and what he’s done now with Manchester United is equally amazing. Because early in the season, things didn’t look very good.”

“And he had the courage, which I really admire, to tell even big established stars such as Cristiano Ronaldo ‘look, this is me running this and this is how I need to do’.

“And that led Ronaldo to leave the club which now seems to have been a good move because the club is doing significantly better without him.

“I think he’s done an amazing job. So I really hope that he stays with the club and if I would be the owner I’d definitely want to see him continue.”

Zilliacus also took time to discuss his chances of purchasing the Red Devils from the Glazer family.

He confirmed that he is well aware he must massively overpay to take over the reins at the Theatre of Dreams.

The 69-year-old was questioned on what role supporters would play in his administration. He outlined that once he wins the race to buy the club, he would invite fans to purchase shares and effectively take part in decision-making.

“Manchester United does not belong to one person, not an ego trip, but to everyone with a heart for the club.”

He however confirmed that fans would not be given prerogative over transfers as it would bring about unprecedented challenges.

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