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Cristiano Ronaldo

'Ronaldo chose to say goodbye' - CR7 instigated Man Utd departure, confirms Ten Hag

08:27 GMT 28/12/2022
Ten Hag Ronaldo 2022-23
As Manchester United begin life without Cristiano Ronaldo, head coach Erik ten Hag has underlined that it was the forward's choice to leave the club.
  • Ronaldo left United in mid-November
  • Ten Hag claimed he "chose to say goodbye"
  • Dutchman urged club to move on

WHAT HAPPENED? Both player and club parted ways back in mid-November after comments made by Ronaldo in an explosive interview with Piers Morgan. With the Portugal forward now gone, Ten Hag has once again stressed the need for his side to look towards the future, but did also concede that the 37-year-old instigated his move away from the club.

WHAT THEY SAID: "The team has been focused on getting back to the Premier League," Ten Hag told Viaplay Sport before United's return to action on Tuesday. "All I see is a hungry team. I do not look back, only to the future. He chose to say goodbye, he is no longer part of the team. He's gone and it's in the past. We are now looking forward and looking at the future."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: With the Dutchman urging United to move on, Ronaldo himself appears to be doing just that, as he closes in on a move to Saudi outfit Al-Nassr with a medical reportedly booked on Boxing Day. Despite Ten Hag stressing the need for a replacement for the Portuguese forward, his side adapted to life well without him on their Premier League return, celebrating a 3-0 win against Nottingham Forest to bring United to within just one point of the Champions League places.

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WHAT NEXT? While Ronaldo's move to Saudi Arabia nears its completion, there is no let up for United in the condensed Premier League schedule, as Ten Hag's men travel to Wolves on New Year's Eve.