Gary Neville has warned Manchester United that they could face a similar situation that they did with Paul Pogba if they do not let go of Cristiano Ronaldo this summer.
At this point, it is no secret that Ronaldo is hell bent on leaving the club and missed a good chunk of their pre-season activity, playing only 45 minutes. His agent in Jorge Mendes has offered the Portuguese so several clubs but Manchester United have issued a public stance that Ronaldo is not for sale.
For the first time in his career, CR7 faces the prospect of playing in the Europa League and the 37-year-old hopes to avoid that on his legacy. A move is now rather unlikely unless United amicably let him go. New coach Erik Ten Hag has revealed that Ronaldo is in his plans for the coming season but club legend Gary Neville has warned that there could be dire consequences if they don’t let the forward leave this summer.
Let Ronaldo leave – Neville sends warning to United
Speaking about Ronaldo’s back and forth transfer saga, Neville is keen to see the Red evils avoid unnecessary drama, like with Pogba and has urged the club to let the former leave.
“Let me be really clear, Ronaldo’s achievements in football go beyond anything that anybody could ever wish for and imagine,” the former Red Devils captain began while speaking on the Overlap, in partnership with Sky Bet . “He’ll go down in the top players of all time and always will be, and what happens this summer at Manchester United will be forgotten about in 20 years.
“But it’s unpalatable for me to watch, as an ex-Manchester United captain, an ex-Manchester United senior player, and thinking that at this moment in time the star player in the dressing room is playing up. It happened at times over the last few years where you had Pogba’s agent – not necessarily Pogba all the time but his agent – always playing up with the club.
“You can’t have your star player in a club running the shop. You cannot have it. So when Sir Alex Ferguson, in the past, moved players on it was because that player needed to be moved on. I know Manchester United fans, but if Ronaldo wants to leave, Manchester United – in my mind – should facilitate that.”
Further lamenting about the situation, Neville added: “That Saturday night, when that statement came out that Cristiano Ronaldo wants to leave and then the Monday morning I think something else came out – I’m not sure the club were even aware.
“The timing was horrific coming into the start of the season, it undermined Ten Hag straight away – it meant that Ten Hag literally has had every single press conference that he does is just obliterated by the Ronaldo issue. I think looking back, Pep [Guardiola], [Jurgen] Klopp, [Antonio] Conte, Sir Alex Ferguson – if a player becomes the dominating factor, and a distraction in the press conference for a manager, there’s only one thing that has to happen. We all know it.”