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The way Ronaldo attacked the club, there was no option: Rooney

“It allows them to focus on the players who are there and want to be there, and for Cristiano, his focus will solely be on the World Cup and Portugal.”

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Manchester United legendry striker, Wayne Rooney thinks it was sad to watch how Cristiano Ronaldo’s relationship with Manchester United ended, adding that given the way the Portuguese player attacked the team, Rooney had no choice but to allow this evolution to take place.

Ronaldo will be leaving Manchester United by mutual consent and with immediate effect, the club announced on Tuesday night via its social media platforms.

Before departing to represent Portugal at the ongoing FIFA World Cup in Qatar, the Portuguese star gave an explosive TV interview to Piers Morgan, where he made disparaging words about the club and head coach Erik ten Hag.

“I have said many times that Ronaldo is one of the best players of all time. It’s sad to see it end this way, but I think once everyone saw the interview he did with Piers Morgan and how he attacked the club, I think there was no option (but) for this to happen,” said Rooney on VISA Match Centre show on Sports18, adding he was not surprised with the development.

Ronaldo, who had re-joined United in August 2021 and finished as their top scorer in all competitions last season with 24 goals, had said he felt “betrayed” by the club for trying to force him out of the team and added that he has “no respect” for United manager Erik ten Hag because he “doesn’t show respect for me”.

Rooney, a former England captain, added that Ronaldo is still a very good player but not what he was when he was 23. “He is now 37. I still felt there was a part for him to play at Manchester United maybe not from the start but coming on (as a substitute). He obviously doesn’t feel to accept that role and wants to continue his career elsewhere, so for the club, it’s probably the best thing.”

Rooney felt that teams will look to sign Ronaldo if he has a good tournament in Qatar. Ronaldo has 117 international goals and will be captaining Portugal in his fifth appearance of the showpiece event, with the side’s campaign starting against Ghana on Thursday.

“It allows them to focus on the players who are there and want to be there, and for Cristiano, his focus will solely be on the World Cup and Portugal.”