Exclusive : “Put sentiment away” and move Ronaldo on, says Man Utd legend


Manchester United should look at the long-term future of the club and allow Cristiano Ronaldo to leave – so says United legend Paul Parker.

Ronaldo has reportedly requested to leave as he wishes to play Champions League football. The 37-year old is keen to preserve his record as the all-time leading goalscorer in the competition.

The matter has been complicated by a lack of suitors, as well as United’s reluctance to move on their highest marketable player for what would be a low transfer fee.

But with Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial looking full of confidence in pre-season, there is a school of thought that suggests the veteran Ronaldo’s relative lack of mobility would hamper the implementation of new manager Erik Ten Hag’s style of football, and that a move would please all parties.

Parker, speaking exclusively on this week’s Talking Devils podcast, believes the club should make the decision to move on quickly.

“If you’re a Manchester United fan, one who wants to see the club back competing where they should be – and that’s challenging for the Premier League and Champions League – you want him to go,” Parker says. “You won’t forget what he did for the club. It’s where he made his name. He’s made it obvious he wants to go and you have to ask if the other players will really need him around because he isn’t going to be positive.

“Put sentiment away now because sentiment will cost you dearly and the biggest thing it will cost Manchester United, if he’s still at the club after the start of the season… if he is left out, he is not going to take to that too well, and he’s the kind of player who will show everything.

“If you’re not saying it out loud, you’re saying it in your head – he’s selfish. He wants to score goals to make sure Messi can’t get near him. That’s not what you want. You want someone who will help your team win games of football.

“If he wants to leave Manchester United, fine – but the idea about wanting to play Champions League football. I didn’t sign for Manchester United because I wanted to play in the European Cup. I signed for them because it was Manchester United. But that’s the different mentality of players today – and we’re introducing players in with the wrong mentality.”

Parker went to explain how the Ronaldo decision could impact the growing confidence of Martial and also discussed the general pre-season and the transfer chase of Frenkie De Jong. The Talking Devils podcast is available below and on all podcast streaming platforms.

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