Manchester United ‘take appropriate steps’ in response to Cristiano Ronaldo interview | CNN


Manchester United announced on Friday that it had “initiated the appropriate steps” in response to superstar striker Cristiano Ronaldo’s recent interview with TalkTV’s Piers Morgan.

In the interview, Ronaldo said he felt “betrayed” by the Premier League club, mentioned his lack of respect for coach Erik ten Hag, and questioned whether he would ever return to the team.

Manchester United’s statement indicated that they would not comment on the matter “until this process has reached its conclusion.”

Various British media have claimed that the club is considering annulling Ronaldo’s contract as a result of the controversial interview.

The Guardian and The Athletic both quoted sources as saying the club had appointed lawyers and was considering legal action against Ronaldo. The Guardian also reports that the striker has been instructed not to return to Carrington, the club’s training ground, once the World Cup is over.

CNN reached out to Ronaldo’s representation to confirm the reports but did not immediately receive a response. Manchester United responded to a request for confirmation with the same statement issued on the club’s website earlier today.

Premier League contracts require as standard that players “act in accordance with all legal instructions of any authorized official of the club” and prohibit “willfully or recklessly writing or saying anything or omitting anything likely to bring the club or the game into football disrepute”.

The contracts also state that players are required, if circumstances permit, to give clubs “reasonable notice” of their intention to appear in public media.

Ronaldo did not enjoy a happy second reunion with the club he first joined in 2003.

After a scintillating first period in which he won all the honours, including his first of five Ballon d’Or awards, last season Ronaldo endured his first season without a trophy since 2005.

He made a fantastic return to Manchester last year, scoring twice on his debut to usher in a new era at United, but things quickly turned sour for the club. They sacked manager and former Ronaldo teammate Ole Gunnar Solskjaer before signing Ralf Ranek, someone Ronaldo said in the interview he had “never heard of”.

Despite United’s poor form and results, Ronaldo is widely championed by fans and pundits alike, thanks to his 24 goals in all competitions.

But since meeting him, those who have been quick to defend him now agree with Ten Hag’s assessment that Ronaldo is unfit to play for United.

“It was all made for one thing – and that’s for him to leave the club,” Ronaldo’s former teammate, Rio Ferdinand, said on his “Vibe with Five” podcast.

“I don’t feel the club will bring him back and I don’t think he wants to come back. It’s all made for that reason.

Meanwhile, Wayne Rooney had to defend himself from meeting Ronaldo. Ronaldo blasted Rooney after the former England captain said Ronaldo’s age was catching up with him and that it would be difficult for the 37-year-old to “just accept what’s happening, not play and sit on the bench.”

Rooney said on Thursday that what he said about Ronaldo was “not a criticism”.

“What I said is age comes to all of us, Cristiano finds it difficult to deal with that,” said the former England international to Ronaldo’s “strange” remarks.

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