Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo says that the club have betrayed him and that he is being actively forced out, while he has no respect for manager Erik ten Hag.
Ronaldo rejoined United from Juventus for a second spell at Old Trafford in August 2021 on a two-year deal, returning to the club where he won eight major trophies from 2003-2009.
"Yes I feel betrayed, and I feel some people don't want me here, not just this year, but last year too," Ronaldo said in an interview with Piers Morgan for TalkTV, released on Sunday.
“I feel betrayed”. Cristiano Ronaldo.@PiersUncensored ⤵️ pic.twitter.com/VJ2FO84SVA— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) November 13, 2022
Last month, Ten Hag said Ronaldo refused to come on as a substitute against Tottenham Hotspur when the forward walked down the tunnel with a few minutes of the match remaining after being left on the bench. He was then not part of the squad that faced Chelsea the following Saturday.
The 37-year-old forward, who will captain Portugal at the World Cup in Qatar, said of Ten Hag: "I don’t have respect for him because he doesn’t show respect for me. If you don’t respect me, I’m never gonna have respect for you."
United did not immediately respond when contacted by Reuters for comment. After the Tottenham game, Ten Hag said that Ronaldo remained "an important player in the squad."
Ronaldo says Manchester United did not support him when he and his partner Georgina Rodriguez's daughter was taken to hospital in July. He said the club doubted him and showed a lack of empathy when he did not arrive on time for pre-season training.
“I think the fans should know the truth,” he said. “I want the best for the club. This is why I came to Manchester United. But you have some things inside that don’t help (us) reach the top level as City, Liverpool and even now Arsenal... a club with this dimension should be top of the tree in my opinion and they are not, unfortunately.”
Ronaldo's first spell was under former United manager Alex Ferguson, who retired in 2013.
"The progress was zero Since Sir Alex (Ferguson) left, I saw no evolution in the club. Nothing had changed," Ronaldo said. "He knows better than anybody that the club is not on the path they deserve to be. He knows. Everyone knows. The people who don’t see that… it’s because they don’t want to see, they are blind."
(Reporting by Tommy Lund in Gdansk; Editing by Toby Davis)