Cristiano Ronaldo spoke to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after he was not included in the starting line-up for the Everton game two weeks ago. Ronaldo was ‘disappointed’ not to play from the first minute and told the Manchester United manager he is fit enough to start every Premier League game.
“Ronaldo was extremely disappointed for being benched,” a Manchester United source told The Sun.
“Solskjaer presumed Ronaldo was tired after the Villarreal game, so he decided to only put him in early in the second half. But Cristiano told him that he will inform him when he isn’t fit to play and that he wants to play in every single league game,” the United source added.
“Ronaldo also told Solskjaer that he has come here to win trophies and that United need to play their most important players in all of the games,” The Sun reports.
Ronaldo, 36, came off the bench in the second half, but couldn’t push United to a win. Everton grabbed a point following a brave performance at Old Trafford. Ronaldo had played the whole game against Villarreal in the Champions League midweek, scoring the winner in the 95th minute. Solskjaer wanted to rest him, but things didn’t go according to the Norwegian’s plan. Ronaldo was bothered and United couldn’t win. A frustrated Ronaldo went down the tunnel after the final whistle in the game, fueling speculation around his relationship with the manager.
Cristiano Ronaldo headed straight down the tunnel after United’s 1-1 draw with Everton.
— B/R Football (@brfootball) October 2, 2021
Solskjaer tried to play down Ronaldo’s reaction.
“Unfortunately, when we don’t win Cristiano is not happy and that’s a mindset you want from every player. That’s absolutely no problem whatsoever,” Solskjaer said.
When the two spoke after the Everton game, the coach motivated his decision and Ronaldo accepted the explanation he received. The relationship between Ronaldo and Solskjaer remains good, sources in the United dressing room assure.
“We all want to see Cristiano because he’s unique. But the plain fact of it is he cannot play every game, that’s just physical nature,” Solskjaer argued.
Ronaldo, back to the starting 11 for the trip to Leicester
After scoring four goals in two games for Portugal, including a hat-trick against Luxembourg in the World Cup 2022 qualifiers, Cristiano Ronaldo returned to Manchester on top form. He was given a start by Solskjaer against Leicester City, as United aim to stay inside the top three in the Premier League table.
During an interview with TNT Sports in Brazil, Ronaldo’s Man. United and Portugal colleague Bruno Fernandes spoke about Cristiano’s incredible ability to get himself in the right position all the time, as well as the motivation keeping him at the top of the game.
“It’s always the same for him. Ronaldo is hungry to break more records,” Fernandes said.
“He once said something very interesting. He said it’s not he who follows the records, it’s the records that follow him. And I’m starting to think it’s true. Because his ability to score goals is impressive, his ability to be in the right place is impressive,” Fernandes commented.
“You have to be there, you have to feel it, you have to have the feeling for the goal. He’s in the right place and scores it. Even being in the right place, it’s hard to score. Some fail. Cristiano doesn’t fail.” the midfielder added.
Ronaldo has won three Premier League titles, two La Liga championships, two Serie A trophies, and the Champions League on five occasions.
But he also holds countless different records at an individual level. Ronaldo is the highest goalscorer in the history of the Euros (14), Champions League (137 in a record 182 games), Real Madrid (450 – including 44 hat-tricks), and international football (115). The Portuguese attacker surpassed Iranian legend Ali Daei’s tally of 109 in September and has now moved on to 115 in 182 Portugal caps, with a record ten hat-tricks.
Ronaldo won the Ballon d’Or five times. Since his return to Manchester United, he scored five goals.