Former Manchester United midfielder Luke Chadwick has weighed in on the current speculation surrounding Red Devils star Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Portugal international returned for a second spell with Man Utd last summer when he joined from Juventus late on in the transfer window, and he’s had a decent campaign at Old Trafford.
Still, it’s clear that United themselves are not the force they were when Ronaldo was at the club under Sir Alex Ferguson, and it wouldn’t be too surprising if he considered moving on.
The likes of Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich and Roma have been linked with Ronaldo in a report from the Sun, who suggest he’s unsettled in Manchester at the moment.
Chadwick wants to see the 37-year-old stay a little longer, however, and praised the way he looked like he wanted to prove a point in the 2-0 win against Brighton last night.
“In the first half United looked a little bit disjointed. Brighton controlled the possession but didn’t have enough cutting edge. United were struggling for ideas bar from one fantastic piece of play by Ronaldo to play in Sancho, who was denied by a good save,” Chadwick told CaughtOffside. “And then we had a moment of pure brilliance from Ronaldo to settle the nerves a bit.
“The result is the most important thing, but it was also good to see a response from Ronaldo. He looked a bit frustrated and eager to get into positions to score goals. Apart from that it’s another clean sheet and hopefully the team can kick on from that.
“You could see last night that Ronaldo has still got plenty to offer in that number 9 position, his movement in and around the box was first class during the whole game.
“There’s always going to be speculation about someone like Ronaldo because he’s such a big name, and when things aren’t going well people start to talk, there’s a lot of noise around him.
“You’d like to think he’d like to leave United in a better position than when he arrived. He still has time left in him, he might not be able to play 90 minutes every single game, but he’s got a role to play. He scored a great goal last night and I think that’ll do him the world of good.
“It would be disappointing if he did go, but if you look at his history with the club he would surely want to leave the club in a stronger position when he does move on.”
If Ronaldo does move on, it would surely mean a world class signing is needed in attack for MUFC, and Chadwick named some options that he’d welcome at Old Trafford.
The ex-Red Devil says his preference would be Borussia Dortmund goal machine Erling Haaland, whilst also naming Harry Kane as a good option if Mauricio Pochettino comes in as manager, though he expects Kylian Mbappe is unrealistic, despite looking like being a free agent this summer.
“The one to come in would be Haaland, he’s the one I think everyone would love to see in the red shirt,” Chadwick said.
“I think he’d relish the chance to play alongside someone like Ronaldo. Working with someone like him would be a huge benefit to him, though obviously I’m sure there’ll be many suitors for Haaland. That just makes it even more vital to secure that fourth spot.
“Obviously there’s also Mbappe, but I can’t imagine him signing for a club finishing fourth or fifth in the Premier League, whereas I think Haaland might see United as an opportunity to rejuvenate the club, and there’d be such a buzz about him. I think he’s more realistic than Mbappe and they’re the top two in world football at the moment.
“I don’t think anyone would be disappointed if United signed Harry Kane. He’s a Tottenham legend, a proven goal-scorer. He’s not been at his best this season but you know he guarantees you goals, and he’d be coming into a United team where you feel he’d be the missing piece of the jigsaw.
“It’s not quite happened with Ronaldo, and there’s been the change of manager and some uncertainty behind the scenes. Pochettino’s obviously managed Kane before and he’s going to want to sign players he knows and trusts.”