Jamie Carragher believes Cristiano Ronaldo “wants to be sacked” following the Portugal star’s claim he has been “betrayed” by Manchester United.
Ronaldo said that head coach Erik ten Hag and others want him out of Old Trafford during a 90-minute interview with Piers Morgan Uncensored, which will be broadcast this week on TalkTV.
When asked if United’s hierarchy were trying to force him out of the club, Ronaldo said: “Yes, not only the coach, but another two or three guys around the club. I felt betrayed.”
Ronaldo also said he did not respect Ten Hag, adding: “I don’t have respect for him because he doesn’t show respect for me. If you don’t have respect for me, I’m never gonna have respect for you.”
Former Liverpool defender and TV analyst Carragher feels Ronaldo is trying to engineer his exit from Old Trafford, having failed to do so in the summer.
“He wants to be sacked, I think that’s obvious,” Carragher told Sky Sports News.
“He told the club in the summer he wanted to leave so I’m not sure where this disrespect comes from Erik ten Hag, I just don’t get this at all. I think he’s disrespecting Man United and Erik ten Hag.
“He wanted to leave in the summer, which is football, these things happen, There were no takers, because maybe of his wages, maybe at a price Manchester United wanted, and I think he knows that’s going to be the same in this next transfer window or maybe the following summer.
“I think he’s now basically trying to be sacked or allowed to leave on a free by the club because that’s the only way he’s going to get out.”
A statement from the club, released on Monday afternoon, read: “Manchester United notes the media coverage regarding an interview by Cristiano Ronaldo. The club will consider its response after the full facts have been established.
“Our focus remains on preparing for the second half of the season and continuing the momentum, belief and togetherness being built among the players, manager, staff, and fans.”
Ronaldo refused to come on as a substitute in last month’s win over Tottenham, leading to him being banished from the squad for the subsequent trip to Chelsea, although he then returned to the fold.
The 37-year-old also hit out at former United team-mate Wayne Rooney over criticism the former had received for refusing to come on against Spurs.
Writing in The Sun newspaper, Morgan revealed Ronaldo said: “I don’t know why he criticises me so badly…probably because he finished his career and I’m still playing at a high level.
“I’m not going to say that I’m looking better than him. Which is true…”
Ronaldo also claimed United had not progressed as a club since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson in 2013.
The forward, who played under Ferguson for six years during his first spell at United before joining Real Madrid in 2009, said: “I don’t know what is going on, but since Sir Alex Ferguson left I saw no evolution in the club, the progress was zero.
“For example, we have an interesting point that how the club as Manchester United, after (they) sack Ole (Gunnar Solskjaer), they buy – they bring (in), sports director Ralf Rangnick, which is something that nobody understands.
“This guy is not even a coach. A bigger club like Manchester United brings (a) sports director – surprised not only me but all the world, you know.
“Nothing changed. Surprisingly. Not only the pool, the jacuzzi, even the gym…Even some points, the technology, the kitchen, the chefs, which is, I appreciate, lovely persons.
“They stopped in a time, which surprised me a lot. I thought I will see different things…different, as I mentioned before, technology, infrastructure.
“But, unfortunately, we see many things that I used to see when I was 20, 21, 23. So, it surprised me a lot.”
Former England international Jermaine Jenas believes Ronaldo can no longer be involved in the Manchester United team following the interview.
Asked on Match of the Day 2 if Ronaldo was “done” at Old Trafford, Jenas said: “He has to be.
“Where I do half kind of (agree) with Ronaldo and what he’s saying, he feels like he’s been kind of used a little bit, he’s like the black sheep, the one to throw the stick at.
“I do at times feel like with Ten Hag it enables him to elevate his position at the football club when he treats Cristiano in a certain way, it enables (him) to get the dressing room to fall in line, but at the same time, Ronaldo does have to behave in line with how the rest of the team does.
“If I was a manager it makes sense for Ten Hag… I mean he can’t play him now, he can’t be involved in the team now.”