Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo says he has been betrayed by the club and is being forced to leave, while he has no respect for manager Erik ten Hag.
Ronaldo joined United from Juventus for a second spell at Old Trafford in August 2021 on a two-year deal, returning to the club where he won eight major trophies between 2003 and 2009.
In an interview with Piers Morgan for TalkTV, published on Sunday, Ronaldo was asked if the United hierarchy were trying to force him out of the club.
“Yes, not only the coach (Ten Hag), but two or three other boys from the club. I felt betrayed,” he said.
“Yes, I feel betrayed and I felt that some people don’t want me here, not only this year, but also last year.”
Last month, Ten Hag said Ronaldo refused to come on as a substitute against Tottenham Hotspur when the striker walked down the tunnel with minutes remaining in the game after being left on the bench.
He was then not part of the squad that faced Chelsea the following Saturday.
The 37-year-old striker, who will captain Portugal at the World Cup in Qatar, said of Ten Hag: “I don’t have respect for him because he doesn’t show me respect. If you don’t respect me, I’ll never respect you.”
United did not immediately respond when contacted by Reuters for comment. After the Tottenham game, Ten Hag said Ronaldo remained “an important player in the squad”.
Ronaldo said Manchester United failed to support him when his daughter was taken to hospital in July. He said the club doubted him and showed little empathy when he failed to turn up for pre-season training on time.
“I think the fans should know the truth,” he said.
“I want the best for the club. That’s why I came to Manchester United.
“But you’ve got some things in there that don’t help us get to the top level like City, Liverpool and even now Arsenal… a club with that size should be top of the tree in my opinion and they are not, unfortunately.”
Ronaldo’s first spell was under former United manager Alex Ferguson, who retired in 2013. The Portuguese said Ferguson shares his vision for the club.
“There was zero progress. Since Sir Alex (Ferguson) left, I didn’t see any progress at the club. Nothing had changed,” Ronaldo said.
“He knows better than anyone that the club is not on the path they deserve.
“He knows. Everyone knows. The people who don’t see this… it’s because they don’t want to see it, they’re blind.”
Ronaldo also criticized the club’s decision last season to replace manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, the Portuguese’s former team-mate, with Ralf Rangnick.
Rangnick had left his role as head of sport and development at Russian side Lokomotiv Moscow to take up a position at Old Trafford.
“After the club fired Ole, they bring in sporting director Ralf Rangnick, which nobody understands,” Ronaldo said.
“This guy, he’s not even a coach. A big club like Manchester United brings a sporting director who surprised not only me but the whole world.”