Cristiano Ronaldo called for Manchester United captain Harry Maguire to be fired last season, as the dressing room became toxic and the team’s results plummeted.
Ronaldo’s return to Old Trafford was not as planned and things became tense last season as the club reached sixth place in the English Premier League table.
Details emerged surrounding the Portuguese striker’s demands to make changes to the team’s formation.
Ronaldo blames Maguire for United’s poor performance
And according to the British newspaper, “The Athletic”, Ronaldo was part of a group of players who escalated matters with Ralf Rangnick, the interim coach of Manchester United, during the month of February.
Among them were Raphael Varane and Paul Pogba, but Ronaldo’s message came clearly when he said: “Maguire is part of the problem.”
A few players from the group later apologized to the interim coach, who left the club in the summer.
The report indicated that Rangnick told players, including Ronaldo, that it was “inappropriate” to talk about Maguire when the player himself was not present.
Ronaldo also had a view on the squad and during the impromptu meeting he told Rangnick in no uncertain terms how he wanted him to choose the squad.
The 37-year-old wanted to play alongside Edinson Cavani up front, but his requests were not heard from the coach at the time.
The report highlighted the summer transfer market at Old Trafford that has been largely overshadowed by Ronaldo with his demand to leave the club, and it now appears inevitable that the striker will remain at the club given how few interested parties can pay him.
The Red Devils’ best performance so far came against Liverpool with a 2-1 victory at Old Trafford when Ronaldo was on the bench, where he participated for a few minutes in the victory over the Reds and then the victory against Southampton.
Ironically, Maguire, who has called for Ronaldo to sack him, has also been out of the squad during the club’s recent improvement in results.
Red Devils coach Eric Ten Hag is trying to make his mark on the team but is risking Ronaldo’s impact on the players if he continues to remain on the bench.
Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand recently stated via his podcast: “Whether Ronaldo stays or not, none of us know but knowing Cristiano I know for a fact that he’s going to be absolutely mad now.”
He added: “He will not be satisfied with being on the bench, given what he has done in his career during this amazing period of time at the levels he has been playing through, so he will not be satisfied with being a substitute in a team that does not participate in the Champions League.”
He concluded: “No matter what anyone says about running, pressing and so on, he will be sitting there and saying to himself I scored 24 goals last season, the hardest thing in football is to score goals, and I did it 24 times last year.”