Ten Hag plans showdown talks to win round Man Utd star amid fresh exit claims

Erik ten Hag will reportedly try to convince Cristiano Ronaldo to stay in decisive clear-the-air talks – but more detail has emerged on why the Portugal star wants out.

The 37-year-old made a sensational return to Old Trafford last summer, but his second chapter there has not been as fruitful as the first. United finished sixth in the Premier League last season following a dismal campaign.

Thus, they will play in the Europa League next season, with Ronaldo – a five-time Champions League winner and the competition’s record goalscorer – looking to get back among Europe’s top table.

However, the Man United star is finding a route out of the club harder than his Real Madrid transfer in 2009.

A return to Los Blancos is unfeasible 13 years later. Atletico Madrid have also rebuffed talk of a move for Ronaldo as financially nonsensical.

According to CBS Sports journalist Ben Jacobs, Ronaldo’s agent – ​​the renowned Jorge Mendes – has now declared that his client is willing to dock his wages by as much as 30 per cent.

But that has still not been enough to convince Atletico to take a punt. They deem a move ‘problematic’ for their finances as it stands.

United, for their part, have continued to stress that Ronaldo is not for sale. And the fact that no club is coming near to taking him away is giving them reason to harden that stance.

Ten Hag wants Ronaldo talks

Jacobs therefore adds that new Man Utd boss Ten Hag wants to have clear-the-air talks while the chance to settle his differences with Ronaldo remains.

But Ronaldo is seemingly having none of it. Not only does he want to return to the Champions League, but he reportedly wants the goalscoring ‘burden’ taken off his shoulders from him.

He top-scored for United last season with 24 goals in 38 games, but feels having more support alongside him can allow him to maintain his peak.

And he clearly does not feel he can get that at Old Trafford. Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford have had impressive pre-seasons, but it remains unclear if they can carry such a form into the Premier League.

Ten Hag wants another attacking signing, with Ajax’s Antony the key target. Ronaldo, though, has seemingly made up his mind about him.

United facing key transfer problem

Man Utd face the prospect of having an unhappy striker as their highest-paid player if they cannot shift Ronaldo.

On the flipside, though, there seem very few avenues – if any – for the Portuguese to go down.

It is a troublesome situation for United and one which needs resolving one way or the other before the end of the transfer window.

Should Manchester United keep Cristiano Ronaldo?

Do Manchester United need Cristiano Ronaldo next season?

Ten Hag needs everyone on board to get his new project going, but Ronaldo will likely continue to dominate the headlines if his situation goes unresolved.

The hope, therefore, for United, is to win the player round. At his best, Ronaldo has proven he is still a menace for defenders and he needs to be convinced that Ten Hag is building something special which suits him.


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