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‘Who is Ikpeba in the world of football?’ – Fans hit out at ex-Nigeria star over Ronaldo comments

7:03 pm AEST 27/4/22
Cristiano Ronaldo Everton vs Man Utd Premier League 2021-22
The 48-year-old has been criticised by fans on social media after his comments on the Portuguese international’s return to Old Trafford

Ex-Nigeria international Victor Ikpeba has come under heavy criticism from fans on social media after his comments directed at Manchester United forward Cristiano Ronaldo.

The 48-year-old, who played for a host of clubs in Europe and managed 31 appearances for the Super Eagles scoring seven goals, claimed on Tuesday that the return of the Portuguese international to Manchester United was a mistake because “he has been a distraction.”

Ronaldo made a return to Old Trafford from Juventus at the start of the season and he has already managed to score 22 goals for the club in all competitions. In the Premier League, he has made 27 appearances overall and accumulated 2,189 minutes of playing time.

He has started in 24 of these appearances across 34 fixtures and came on as a substitute on three occasions.

“I think he should be leaving the club. Ronaldo coming back to Manchester United was a mistake,” Ikpeba said on SuperSport’s Monday Night Football.

“It is not a question of him scoring goals, so many things happen when a star player returns to his original club. In many ways, Ronaldo has been a distraction. He’s a global star in football, he shouldn't have come back at that age, he should have gone to Manchester City.

“Egocentric players, jealousy comes to play in the dressing room. The atmosphere has been nasty right from the beginning.”

Ikpeba’s comments on Ronaldo come a few weeks after he also criticised Nigeria forward Victor Osimhen, after his missed chance against Ghana.

Below is how fans responded to Ikpeba’s Ronaldo claims on the GOAL Africa Facebook page.

“Who is Ikpeba in the world of football, for all his recent blasphemies and where did he school?” Olasunkanmi Adekunle Adetayo posed. “Victor [Ikpeba] should keep quiet and focus on his business,” added Victor Vershima Tyovenda.

Tabita Kennie John Jnr said: “Now I understand why Victor [Osimhen] told him to stick to his pundit,” while Matthew Inaughe wondered whether some people were really following Man United games: “Sometimes I wonder if these people watch the same sports as we do. It's clear without Cristiano Ronaldo, Man United will be fighting for 10th position.”

Meanwhile, Tinotenda Mandima has questioned Ikpeba about where he was when the Super Eagles missed out on the World Cup ticket: “He [Ikpeba] should mind his own business, where was he when the Super Eagles were knocked out of World Cup qualification?”

Samuel Azuh opined if it was a mistake for Man United to re-sign Ronaldo, then they would be fighting relegation in the Premier League: “If it a mistake, probably Man United should have been in the relegation zone by now, he [Ronaldo] is the best player in Man United presently while Jeff Ebiye Fiyananabor wrote: “A mistake? He is Man United’s saviour. His goals have helped Man United. Ikpeba should be careful what he says.”

Adakole Godwin-Agbo posed a question to Ikpeba: “Man United will be much closer to the relegation zone were it not for his goals. How exactly is his signing a mistake?”

Another supporter Ntim Samuel aimed a dig at Ikpeba: “How can we accept a comment from a person whose country, upon all the stars, couldn’t qualify for World Cup?”

Despite the negative attacks, Ikpeba got support from some quarters, with Abdulrahman Umar agreeing: “Big mistake for Man United, they have been sinking down since his return,” opined Umar while Enimola Samuel said: “Yes, indeed a very huge mistake... Man United wasn’t like before again.”

Afam Anyafulu Tony also supported Ikpeba's claims saying Ronaldo should have instead signed for Man City: “Yes a very big mistake, I can bet if he had signed for Man City with all the intelligence they have, he would bang a lot of goals and might even be competing for another world award.”

Do you agree with Ikpeba that it was wrong for Ronaldo to return to Manchester United and should have, instead, signed for Man City? Drop your thoughts in the comment box below.