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Galatasaray ready to pounce for unsettled Manchester United star

Erik ten Hag and Cristiano Ronaldo at Man Utd
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The future of Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United now hangs in the balance. His reactions and behaviour are deemed “unacceptable” by Red Devils boss Erik ten Hag, who cast aside the iconic player for the match against Chelsea, unwilling to tolerate any indiscipline from the Portuguese superstar.

Following the hugely positive and important win last week against Tottenham Hotspur, who Manchester United comfortably defeated 2-0 at Old Trafford, most of the headlines in the United Kingdom inevitably centred around Cristiano Ronaldo. He played no part in the victory, and several minutes before the final whistle, was observed stomping off down the tunnel towards the changing rooms.

During his pre-match press conference ahead of the next game against Chelsea, the United manager confirmed that Ronaldo had refused to come on as a substitute against Spurs, leaving Ten Hag with an important disciplinary matter he needed to resolve. “I am the manager, I’m responsible for the top sport culture here and I have to set the standards and values, and I have to control them. We are in a team.” He underlined with no uncertain terms.

This also wasn’t the first such incident involving Ronaldo, who also departed early from the pre-season friendly against Rayo Vallecano, which also annoyed his manager. Given he repeated the same indiscipline against Tottenham, there was no alternative but to take appropriate action. “Cristiano will not be part of the Manchester Untied squad for this Saturday’s game against Chelsea.” Read and official club statement.

“After Rayo Vallecano I said it’s unacceptable but he wasn’t the only one. That is for everyone, when it’s the second time it will have consequence. That is now what we did. We’ll miss him tomorrow, it’s a miss for the squad but I think it’s important for the attitude, mentality for the group,” explained Ten Hag. In his view, no player comes above the laws established by the manager, and no matter how famous they are, the team comes first.

“I set a warning at the start of the season. Football is a team sport and you have to fulfil certain standards,” insisted Ten Hag, albeit hopeful that Ronaldo would accept the punishment as an opportunity to reflect on his behaviour. Without the iconic player, Manchester United battled to earn a 1-1 draw at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea, thanks to a late equaliser by their Brazilian midfielder Casemiro.

Meanwhile, the future of Ronaldo at the club continues to remain under a cloud of doubt. Having tried to leave in the summer transfer window, there are growing rumours he will now seek an exit in the January window. This inevitably fuels intense speculation at bookmakers around the world, including the best football betting sites in India, based upon the latest reviews covering where to find value odds and appealing promotions.

However, trying to engineer a move away from Old Trafford was far from east, as Ronaldo quickly discovered several months ago. The response was bleak to say the least, with no top clubs expressing any serious interest. Reportedly, the only official bid received by Manchester United came from Al-Hilal FC, although Ronaldo quickly snubbed any idea of moving to Saudi Arabia, keen to remain in Europe.

As the speculation and rumours continue, it seems that Ronaldo is now the subject of interest from Galatasaray. According to Spanish sports media outlet Marca, the Turkish club has requested a meeting with Jorge Mendes, the super-agent who represents the player. They apparently expressed some initial interest and made enquiries last summer, although those conversations didn’t reach any positive conclusions.

Now it seems that Galatasaray are ready to make a more formal approach, eager to reach an agreement with the Portugal international before the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, hopeful he could arrive at the club once the tournament is over. Any such move would certainly pique the interest of Ronaldo, who now seems even keener to depart Old Trafford for good, ready to close this this unhappy and frustrating chapter of his career.