Man United in 2021: Ronaldo's return, Ole out and Rangnick revolution
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Cristiano Ronaldo stormed off the field as Manchester United failed to beat Newcastle on Monday night. The Red Devils went into the game hoping to make it three Premier League wins from three under Ralf Rangnick. However, they were ultimately held to a 1-1 draw with Edinson Cavani coming to the rescue.
Newcastle were the better team on Monday night, posing all sorts of problems for Rangnick’s side.
They took a deserved lead in the first half through Allan Saint-Maximin, who now has seven goal involvements from 19 Premier League matches this term.
Yet United earned a draw through Cavani, who struck in the closing stages of the match to spare them from further embarrassment.
After the game, Ronaldo failed to hide his anger.
For the third time this season he was seen storming off the field, failing to acknowledge the supporters who had travelled for over three hours to watch him play.
Gary Neville was one person critical of Ronaldo after the game, saying the body language of the forward and Bruno Fernandes wasn’t acceptable.
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“It’s annoyed me for about two months,” the former United captain fumed on Sky Sports.
“The best players in your team, it’s devastating when they’re showing that look and body language to the younger ones. They have to help them.
“They have to be the father, the grandparent in the team. I made massive mistakes at Man Utd but I had great senior players who would have a go at me but also put their arm around me I think there’s something wrong.
“You can’t run off at the end of a game. Bruno is whinging all the time; he’s been sensational for Man Utd. The two centre-backs were poor at the back, Maguire is having a nightmare season.
“You’ve got to be there when your team-mates need you in those moments,” he added.
“At the end of the day, I love that lad [Ronaldo], he’s the best I’ve ever seen in my life at times, but don’t run off like that. I’m not having that.”
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In the wake of Ronaldo’s tantrum, however, it’s worth revisiting what he himself has said about storming off the field in the past.
Speaking in October, after his anger against Everton, the 36-year-old insisted it was a good thing because it showed how much he cares.
And he refused to apologise, insisting he’d never change the way he conducts himself on the field of play.
“I don’t like to lose. [It was a] draw? Draw – but for me, to draw against Everton – who have my whole respect – at home is like a loss,” he said.
“Maybe I’m thinking wrong, but this is the way I motivate myself and win stuff during my career and I play for the most important clubs in the world.
“So, as I said, criticism will always exist here. I’m not hiding from that and, to be honest, I really don’t care because I know football is like that.
“My reactions are what I feel at that moment. Most of the time when I talk it’s very, very positive but sometimes, depending on the game, maybe you say things that you don’t agree or whatever but it’s me.
“Everyone knows me. I’ve always been like that; I’m not going to change now with my age.
“I will always give 100 per cent for this club and my reactions is part of what I am.
“I don’t want to hurt anybody. I know there will be eyes on me because of what I am, what I achieve, what I win.
“They don’t want to give me credit for the good things; they’re always going to find the bad things but for me it’s not a problem.
“Life’s a constant lesson and I still learn with my mistakes, trying to improve the next game.”
Ronaldo is unconcerned over his own behaviour.
Yet the truth is that he, like his team-mates, must take responsibility for the situation the club are in.
United are next in action against Burnley on Thursday.
Should they fail to win, it would leave them with a huge task amid their quest to finish in the Premier League top four.
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