Ronaldo ‘would have preferred to be winning with Man Utd’ as regret suspected

Ronaldo ‘would have preferred to be winning with Man Utd’ as regret suspected

Cristiano Ronaldo would prefer to have stayed at Manchester United instead of jumping ship to Al-Nassr earlier in the season, Louis Saha believes. The Portugal international left Old Trafford for a second time after criticising the club in a bombshell interview with Piers Morgan. The 38-year-old had planned to play on in Europe – but ended up moving to Saudi Arabia instead.

Ronaldo sent shockwaves around world football when he criticised United to Morgan.

The veteran tore into Erik ten Hag, insisting the 53-year-old had shown him a lack of respect, while also venting his fury at the Glazers and the club’s failure to improve their facilities at Carrington.

In the end, United had no choice but to cut Ronaldo loose – with the veteran then moving to Al-Nassr.

Yet Saha, speaking to, believes his old team-mate has regrets about how his second spell at Old Trafford ended.

“If Cristiano had understood what was required of him and for the squad, to compromise in some way, he could have stayed,” said the Frenchman, who previously played with Ronaldo under Sir Alex Ferguson.

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“He’s a great player, and I still feel frustrated because he could have scored at least 10-15 goals easily this year and helped the team be in a stronger position.

“Cristiano is a very proud man, and he would never say this, but deep down he would have preferred to have been scoring goals and winning trophies with Man United.

“It would have been the better story for him, and better for his legacy, even if he won’t admit it.”

United have done well without Ronaldo.

They finished third in the Premier League table and won the Carabao Cup in February.

And they can finish the season on a high if they beat Manchester City in the FA Cup final on Saturday.

Reflecting on the season, Saha said: “I think that getting second place this season is tremendous for Arsenal but in terms of accolades, improvements throughout the year and winning games in every competition, United have been better.

“They competed on every front, whereas Arsenal – I don’t think they’ve done it.

“In Europe and the cups they didn’t do so well, which suggests throughout the season the squad was not quite there. I think United had a better season.”

With Ronaldo no longer at the club, Marcus Rashford has stepped up.

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The United star has 30 goals across all competitions this season, shining without his old team-mate at the club.

And Saha has hailed the England international, saying: “When you look at Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, when they got to 70 goal contributions in a season they would still want more and would be hungry to keep scoring and winning trophies.

“Rashford can do the same. His consistency is improving and he now needs to push for the biggest accolades.

“When you have his kind of talent, it is an obligation, he is obliged to become one of the world’s best now.

“He has to catch up with Haaland and Mbappe to be winning Ballon d’Or’s in the future, and he can do it. He still has the ability to improve 15 to 20 per cent more, he can do it.”

And Saha also feels United signing Mason Mount from Chelsea can ease some of the pressure on Rashford, too.

“United have a dependency on Rashford, so any player with the capacity to create and take on opposition players would be welcome,” he continued.

“United have intelligent players, but we lack speed.

“Mount’s is a profile that could be considered, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the move materialised.”

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