Premier League great Mark Schwarzer believes it’s time for Cristiano Ronaldo to part ways with Manchester United, amid the constant speculation over the disgruntled stars future.
Ronaldo appears to be heading towards an ugly exit from Manchester United after he missed the clubs pre-season tour to Thailand and Australia last month.
It’s believed that the five-time Ballon d’Or winner is chasing a transfer away from the Red Devils after they failed to qualify for the Champions League last season.
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While Ronaldo did return to Manchester United’s match day squad for a pre-season clash with Spanish club Rayo Vallecano on Monday (AEST), he was subbed off at halftime.
After storming out of Old Trafford with 10 minutes to play in that match, manager Erik ten Hag is reportedly set to bench the star striker for their Premier League season opener on Sunday.
It was an act that ten Hag branded as “unacceptable” as the Dutchman looks to assert his authority.
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Schwarzer said that while both the club and ten Hag have done well to manage the recent drama and speculation, it might be time to find Ronaldo a deal with another club.
“It’s time for him to move on. I still think he could add something to Manchester United but I don’t see him as a week-in week-out starter and that’s obviously what he demanded last season,” Schwarzer said on the Gegen Pod.
“He was their leading goal scorer, he was the player that got them out of more trouble than anyone else. I kind of understand it. But now you’re talking about building a side.
“For Cristiano Ronaldo, we all know he’s running out of time. He wants to win trophies, he wants to win things, he wants to win another Ballon d’Or for sure, (but I) don’t think that’s going to happen.
“I reckon it’d be amazing if he went to Atletico Madrid … there’s massive resistance from fans and some people from within the club.”
European giants including Atletico Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich have all reportedly turned down the chance to sign the 37-year-old.
He has also been linked with a stunning return to his boyhood club Sporting Lisbon, who have qualified for this year’s Champions’ League group stage.
Another player under pressure in Manchester City’s Jack Grealish, who was recently warned about his underwhelming form with the Premier League champions last season.
Former Aston Villa striker Tony Cascarino told talkSPORT that Grealish could leave the Etihad and “end up back at Villa” if the £100m player doesn’t improve.
Schwarzer, who is widely considered to be a Premier League legend, doesn’t think that the 26-year-old has lived up to the expectation believed of him when he signed for City.
“I think he’s a million miles away from even the player he was at Aston Villa,” he added.
“He’s an interesting one. His relationship with Erling Haaland, how that’s going to develop, how that’s gonna flourish. We talk about big signings and I think Haaland, Darwin Nunez, these guys they will fit in, they will score goals.
“It will be a battle of who will finish top at the end of the season, I’ve got no doubt.”
The Premier League kicks off with a match between Crystal Palace and Champions League hopefuls Arsenal at Selhurst Park.
Manchester United don’t get their season underway until 11pm on Sunday against Brighton at Old Trafford.