LONDON, 23 Nov 2022:
Cristiano Ronaldo will leave Manchester United with “immediate effect”, the club announced yesterday.
The Portuguese star, who is currently with his national team at the World Cup in Qatar, gave an explosive television interview last week – in which he said he felt “betrayed” by the club and did not respect manager Erik Ten Hag.
“Cristiano Ronaldo is to leave Manchester United by mutual agreement, with immediate effect,” United said in a statement. “The club thanks him for his immense contribution across two spells at Old Trafford.”
Ronaldo moved to United from Sporting CP as an 18-year-old, and developed into one of the world’s leading stars during his first spell at Old Trafford – which saw him win three Premier League titles and one Champions League title, in addition to the FA Cup and League Cup.
He moved to Real Madrid in 2009 for a then-world record fee, and cemented his status as one of the best footballers in history during a trophy-laden nine years at the Bernabeu.
His second spell at Old Trafford on a two-year contract came after a disappointing spell with Juventus, but while he was the Red Devils’ top scorer during the 2021/22 campaign, United struggled collectively and fired manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Last summer, the Old Trafford club brought in former Ajax manager Ten Hag, whose dynamic, high pressing style was unlikely to favour the veteran 37-year-old striker.
Ronaldo reportedly tried to secure a move away from Old Trafford during the last transfer window, but a shortage of interested buyers meant he remained in Manchester as this season began.
“Following conversations with Manchester United we have mutually agreed to end our contract early,” Ronaldo said in his own statement.
“I love Manchester United and I love the fans, that will never ever change. However, it feels like the right time for me to seek a new challenge.”