Rating Man Utd’s season so far: Ronaldo and Maguire victims of Ten Hag’s Old Trafford overhaul

Finally, we come to the curious case of Cristiano Ronaldo and his long-awaited return to Manchester.

The Portuguese superstar scored 24 goals across all competitions in his Homecoming season, but United still failed to win a Trophy and slipped to their worst-ever Premier League finish.

This led to suggestions that Ronaldo had disrupted the balance of the team and, after his failed bid to secure a summer exit to continue playing Champions League football, that theory appears to have been proven right.

Ronaldo led the line during the Brentford defeat, and cut an isolated figure as he watched his teammates being opened up at will while struggling to keep any sort of shape.

Ten Hag has since opted to deploy Rashford through the middle ahead of Ronaldo, sparking a clear improvement in the Red Devils’ pressing game, but the 37-year-old frontman remains a problem.

Another former United defender, Rio Ferdinand, has warned that Ronaldo will be “absolutely fuming” at his new bench role, and if his situation doesn’t change quickly, he could prove to be a disruptive presence in the dressing room.

A January exit could be the best solution for all parties – Ronaldo, remember, has scored just once in eight Appearances in all competitions this season – but the Red Devils would first need to line up a replacement due to a lack of back-up options at centre-forward.


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