(Opinion) – The latest on Ronaldo proves players run the sport, not the clubs

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Cristiano Ronaldo has thrown his toys out of the pram and wants to leave Manchester United.

Rumoured to be wanted by Chelsea (90min), fans have been left to wonder what will happen with their famous number seven and according to a report from The Athletic – but so have United.

It has been noted that following the 37-year-old’s decision to effectively quit the club, the Red Devils have been forced to hold off on launching a promotional video for the side’s new 2022-23 kit.

A short snippet from the outlet’s report reads: “The uncertainty around Ronaldo — sparked by him telling United he wants to leave should a suitable bid arrive and continued by his absence from Carrington for pre-season training and the departure for their summer tour today — has prompted a re-think. The advert remains in the creative process and can be altered depending on Ronaldo’s status in Erik ten Hag’s squad.”

Yes, we know – he’s one of the greatest of all time, and with the Red Devils failing to qualify for next season’s Champions League, it is no surprise to see the great Ronaldo demand only the very best to match his own high standards.

But – let’s not forget – he is under contract for at least another 12 months. He may earn obscene amounts of cash and it may be impossible to relate, but when all is said and done, he is still just an employee of an organisation.

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There are certain standards everybody must adhere to and leaving your employer in the lurch to the point of affecting their commercial activity is never usually tolerated – so why should (is) Ronaldo be any different?

Cristiano Ronaldo in action for Man United last season.

All this latest twist does is shine the spotlight on the sorry state football finds itself in.

Clubs are the ones who fork out insane amounts of money – to the players, the player’s agents, the player’s families – the list is endless – so why are they the ones with the least amount of control in situations?

Do clubs not realise how weak they look to fans, both their own and opposition? – Just look at how amateur-ish United look by their star player partnering with Binance, one of their sponsors’ (Tezos) biggest competitors. It’s such an embarrassing look and would never be allowed to happen in any other industry.

The bottom line is, Ronaldo is a United player and he is under contract. Believe me, I have no dog in this race. I care not if Ronaldo stays at Old Trafford or leaves, but what I do not agree with is a single player dictating so much to his employer.

From a tribalistic sporting perspective, United fans have every right to feel aggrieved.

Fair enough, Ronaldo is a legend of the sport, a player who continually strives to smash the next record, so I suppose you could say his behaviour is ‘understandable’, but make no mistake – it should never be accepted – ever.

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