Former Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, in an interview with the Athletic, said that the club’s decision to re-sign Cristiano Ronaldo “turned out wrong.”
Solskjaer was the manager when the Portuguese star arrived for his second United stint in August 2021.
With the move creating a lot of hype, which was amplified after Ronaldo’s brilliant start, the ending turned out to be anti-climactic. A run of poor results led to the Norwegian being sacked in November of 2021.
As for Ronaldo, he left Old Trafford on a sour note and signed for Saudi Pro League club Al Nassr in December 2022.
“It was about taking the next step to challenge for the title. And, unfortunately, it just didn’t work out,” Solskjaer said.
“It was a decision that was very difficult to turn down and I felt we had to take it, but it turned out wrong.”
“It felt so right when he signed, and the fans felt that at that Newcastle game (when he scored twice) when Old Trafford was rocking. He was still one of the best goalscorers in the world, he was looking strong.”
However, the Norwegian added: “When you have a group you need everyone to pull in the same direction. When things didn’t go right, you could see certain players and egos came out.”
Criticism of Maguire a disgrace
Solskjaer, who was the manager when United signed Harry Maguire from Leicester City in 2019, said that the recent criticism and backlash has been unfair.
“Harry Maguire -- it’s a disgrace that he’s getting so much abuse. I feel sorry for him, but he’s a strong lad, and I hope it turns for him.”
“He raised our defence big time when he arrived and lifted the mood around the place.”
United is now under the tutelage of Dutchman Erik Ten Hag, who has not enjoyed a good start to the season. In the Premier League, the Red Devils have lost three of its opening five fixtures, which is its worst start in the competition’s history.
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