Cristiano Ronaldo made his first pre-season look with Manchester United on Sunday in a 1-1 draw in opposition to Rayo Vallecano after a summer time of hypothesis about his future.
Photos of Ronaldo leaving Previous Trafford earlier than the ultimate whistle surfaced on social media, however United have made it clear that he was one among many gamers to take action and it’s not an issue for the membership.
Ronaldo, who has informed United about his want to depart the membership on a number of events, performed for the primary half earlier than being despatched off for eventual goalscorer Amad Diallo.
The 37-year-old’s shortened minutes got here as no shock, with supervisor Erik ten Hag admitting that Ronaldo is much behind his teammates by way of health earlier than the sport at Previous Trafford.
“He’s not on the degree of the remainder of the crew as a result of he has missed many weeks,” the Dutchman informed Viaplay. “However he wants video games and he wants coaching, lots.”
Ronaldo was absent for United’s pre-season tour of Thailand and Australia whereas coping with a household downside and solely returned to coaching on Tuesday when he and his agent, Jorge Mendes, additional mentioned his future.
United insists they won’t sanction the sale of the four-time Ballon d’Or winner, which is firmly in Ten Hag’s plans.
Regardless of Ronaldo’s insistence on leaving, there was no signal of grudge in opposition to him from Previous Trafford loyalists, with followers greeting him with cheers as he exited the tunnel. He posted on his social media channels after the sport: “Comfortable to be again”.
It’s unclear the place Ronaldo’s potential exit routes lie as Chelsea now not seems to be an choice whereas Bayern Munich and Atletico look like publicly ruling out a transfer.
The sport in opposition to Rayo Vallecano was United’s final recreation of pre-season earlier than the Premier League opener in opposition to Brighton subsequent Sunday, reside on Sky Sports activities.
Ten Hag: Now we have made good progress, however we’ve room for enchancment
Manchester United supervisor Erik ten Hag oversaw six preseason video games – dropping only one early – and was happy with the efficiency, however says he expects extra improvement from his new crew.
“Total, undoubtedly (proud of the preseason), I feel we’re doing a great preseason and making good progress,” mentioned Ten Hag. MUTV. “We’re prepared for the season, however I do know there’s nonetheless lots of room for enchancment and we have to enhance.
“That is additionally a course of that continues into the season, however for subsequent week it is also in regards to the outcome. It was (crew choice) a mix of expertise and youth, some guys met for the primary time immediately, so what are you able to count on?
“You noticed that the angle was unbelievable, they fought and labored for one another and it was optimistic. We created lots of possibilities, okay, we additionally conceded possibilities, however I feel we’ve to be proud of the efficiency.”
Optimistic for Ten Hag, regardless of Rayo’s draw
Evaluation by Richard Morgan of Sky Sports activities:
“Precisely one week into Man Utd’s Premier League season at dwelling to Brighton – reside on Sky Sports activities – new supervisor Erik ten Hag may have realized lots from their final pleasant, the final earlier than the actual motion start.
“The Dutchman, after seeing his new crew lose 1-0 to Atletico Madrid 24 hours earlier, has fielded a really modified lineup, even when he began with a brand new signing Martinez alongside Varane within the coronary heart of United’s protection, with the Argentine impressing earlier than being hooked on the hour.
“Younger man Laird he additionally drew consideration to the appropriate again and curiously, Ten Hag selected to make use of each summer time signings Eriksen and Van de Beek holding the midfielders in entrance of him.
“The Danish professional performed the present from the middle of the park earlier than resting even half an hour from the tip, but it surely was the younger Tahith Chong And Garnacho Ferreyra which each actually impressed with their energetic offensive efficiency.
“As for the protagonist himself, Ronaldo began offensively, however after an awesome begin, the 37-year-old’s affect started to wane, earlier than being caught on the counterattack.”