Erik ten Hag says Cristiano Ronaldo is in his Manchester United plans for the coming season.
United are ready to listen to offers from Ronaldo this summer, Sky Sports News understands, but the club’s public position has remained that he is not for sale.
Ronaldo will not be part of United’s pre-season tour of Thailand and Australia due to “personal issues”, Ten Hag said on Monday.
But the United boss added: “We are planning with Ronaldo for this season – that’s it. I’m looking forward to working with him.”
When asked if Ronaldo wanted to leave, Ten Hag replied: “He didn’t tell me. I read, but as I said, Cristiano is not for sale, he is in our plans and we want to succeed together.
“I spoke with him before this issue arose. I had a conversation with him and had a really good conversation.”
The 37-year-old striker returned to Old Trafford last summer from Juventus and still has one season left on his contract.
Sky Sports News has been told that Ronaldo’s agent, Jorge Mendes, has spent the past few weeks selling the ‘Cristiano effect’ to clubs after compiling a dossier on huge sponsorship, social media and the influence of ‘new markets ” from his client.
Chelsea co-owner Todd Boehly is among the leaders to listen to the pitch and is considering a move, with the Blues also having discussed a deal for Paris Saint-Germain striker Neymar.
Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Napoli have also been signed with Mendes.
Ten Hag: United looking for midfielders and forwards
Ten Hag also confirmed that United are still looking to do business in the transfer market, with midfielders and forwards topping the list.
Sky Sports News was informed last week that United and Barcelona had a “broad agreement” on a fee – estimated at €65m (£56m) plus performance-related surcharges – for Frenkie de Jong.
Ten Hag wasn’t ready to talk about specific targets, but said: “Certainly we are looking for players in midfield, and also in attack we are always looking for players.
“I never talk about players who are not under contract at Man United, players from different clubs. I can’t tell you anything about that.
“We want to have the right players. We have a very good team, we are working on developing our way of playing and if the opportunity arises we will strike.”
Man Utd planned for Ronaldo to be the ‘central point of attack’
Sky Sports News senior reporter Melissa Reddy:
“Erik ten Hag has reiterated the club’s position that Cristiano Ronaldo is not for sale and is an integral part of his plans. The club have planned the campaign with him as the focal point of the attack.
“What is very interesting, however, is that he said he had spoken to Ronaldo but not since the issue arose with his family situation and the news that he said he wanted to leave the club if a suitable offer came in. So since then, no discussion has taken place between the manager and Ronaldo, which was a very fascinating thing.
“But he said he just wanted Ronaldo to focus on what he’s facing right now and the club are calm about the situation.”
Ronaldo’s dilemma: was he to blame?
Sky Sports’ Peter Smith:
Cristiano Ronaldo has been named Premier League Player of the Month for April. He had scored five goals in four games, including a hat-trick. But in that month, Manchester United have won just one out of six games.
Ronaldo was also named in the Premier League Team of the Year. United ended the season with back-to-back defeats to Brighton and Crystal Palace. Sixth and without a trophy. It was their worst performance in the league in 32 years.
While his team floundered, Ronaldo – at 37, it should not be forgotten – still found a way to win.
The individual and the collective. This is Ronaldo’s dilemma.
Read the full feature here
Man Utd schedule: Ten Hag debut followed by Liverpool clash on Sky
Erik ten Hag’s first Premier League game as Manchester United manager will be against Brighton at Old Trafford, live on sky sportsduring the opening Super Sunday of the 2022/23 season.
After taking on Graham Potter’s Seagulls on Sunday August 7, live on Air Sports, United travel to Brentford the following Saturday before hosting their rivals liverpool in a blockbuster early-season clash on Monday night footballAugust 22. Both of these games are also live on sky sports.
United’s trip to the Etihad Stadium for the first Manchester derby of the season on October 1 kicks off a daunting month that sees Ten Hag’s side travel to Everton and Chelsea and host Tottenham, Newcastle and West Ham.
The last game before the season break for the Winter World Cup will be against Fulham on the weekend of 12/13 November. United then return to action on Boxing Day at Fulham.
2023 will be opened with a home game against promoted Bournemouth. Premier League champions Manchester City are next at Old Trafford on January 14, the return trip to Anfield on March 4, while United conclude their season at home to Fulham on May 28.
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