It has been three months since former Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo’s bombshell interview with British broadcaster Piers Morgan, which made headlines all over the footballing world.
The Portuguese superstar hit out at the club’s owners, manager Erik ten Hag, as well as former interim boss Ralf Ragnick. He also aimed jibes at former Manchester United teammates Wayne Rooney and Gary Neville.
During the sit-down with Morgan, Cristiano Ronaldo took a dig at Rooney’s appearance, suggesting that he was better-looking than the Englishman.
This clearly did not sit well with former Manchester United star Sammy McIlroy, who played alongside George Best and Bobby Charlton. The Northern Irishman said last November (via Express Sport):
“He wouldn’t have lasted two minutes in our day with the things he’s doing now. Cristiano Ronaldo would have been sorted out, thrown out of the dressing room and told to get on with it during my era. He’s over-stepped the line – not just what he said about the manager but also what he’s said about Wayne Rooney as well.”
“Rooney has done a fantastic job as a Man Utd player, so why bring him into the conversation and criticize his condition? It was unnecessary. We don’t all have botox and a wax face like Ronaldo has – Rooney is just a natural lad and a football-loving man. End of story. But Ronaldo didn’t have to say that. Nobody is bigger than the football club, it’s as simple as that.”
“I can’t see him playing again. I really do hope he leaves the club and finds somewhere else.”
The Northern Irishman’s wishes came true as Cristiano Ronaldo’s Manchester United contract was terminated by mutual consent following the interview. The Portuguese superstar would go on to join Saudi Arabian outfit Al-Nassr.
“He was a pain around the club” – Cristiano Ronaldo slammed for ‘suffocating the life’ out of Manchester United star
Former Sky Sports commentator Richard Keys has attributed Marcus Rashford’s red-hot form this season in part to Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure. The English presenter believes Manchester United are better off without the Portuguese superstar.
Keys wrote in his personal blog:
“If Ten Hag has done anything to help Rashford, it was in getting rid of Ronaldo. Surely the debate about the stroppy self-centered superstar is now over? Yes – he got goals after re-signing for United but rarely were they significant goals.”
“He was a pain around the club and he suffocated the life out of players like Rashford. Here’s the proof – with Ronaldo starting games at United, Rashford scored eight goals in 19 games. Now Ronaldo has gone, it’s 16 in 17 – 10 in 10 in the PL. Obviously, there are other factors but those stats don’t lie.”
Rashford has racked up 24 goals in 36 appearances across competitions for Manchester United this season. Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo has bagged five goals in four Saudi Pro League games for Al-Nassr.