Ronaldo must accept reduced role at Manchester United until January at least

Erik ten Hag will give Cristiano Ronaldo permission to find a new club if he cannot accept his new role at Manchester United.

Tensions rose at United last week when Ten Hag was forced to take disciplinary actions against Ronaldo, 37, for refusing to come off the bench and storming straight down the tunnel in the 89th minute against Tottenham.

After the match it was confirmed that Ronaldo had been asked to come on but refused before leaving the stadium early. It is believed that the Portuguese star had left the dressing room before his teammates got back to celebrate their 2-0 win over Antonio Conte’s side.

Ronaldo was also forced to train alone last week, and he was left out of the United squad that travelled to Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

The problem in January is that we are not sure whether to expect a flurry of interest in Ronaldo’s signature because it was non-existing during the summer.

According to The Athletic, European clubs were informed Ronaldo was willing to take a pay cut to leave last summer but no Champions League sides made a proposal to buy him.

“United wanted a fee, but now they would allow a free transfer subject to his contract being mutually terminated.”

The report also claims: “Erik ten Hag wants to hear whether Ronaldo can countenance not being a starter – should he accept flexibility, he is expected to re-join first-team training. If he rejects it and presses to leave again, Ten Hag would allow him to explore finding a new club.”

Ronaldo’s second spell at United wasn’t supposed to end this way – but we shouldn’t be surprised because he forced an exit in 2009 too.

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