Last season there were rumors of internal unrest as United went through bleak times, and ended up only finishing sixth in the Premier League. Ronaldo’s arrival was seen as a big maneuver, but it didn’t end well, even United sacked Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in November 2021.
There has been speculation the five-time Ballon d’Or winner wants to take over the armband from Harry Maguire, leading to a split in the dressing room. Portuguese-speaking players, such as Bruno Fernandes, Fred and Diogo Dalot, are all said to have formed a gang with Ronaldo.
The arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo to Old Trafford does raise pros and cons. There were those who praised the way Ronaldo demanded higher standards at United, but others called the signing counterproductive as the player was thought to be more focused on his individual achievements.
However, all these rumors were denied by Brandon Williams, who just returned to Manchester United after last season’s loan at Norwich City.
“I wasn’t there when he just came back. But, since I came back, he’s been a big influence on the team,” said Williams, as quoted from the Mirror, Wednesday (21/9/2022).
“He always talks to me. He makes sure he doesn’t ignore anyone. He talks to everyone.”
Become a Bench Warmer
Ronaldo actually wanted to leave Manchester United in the summer of 2022, but it failed to materialize.
However, Ronaldo had difficulty finding a club that would accommodate him. He was rejected by many clubs, mainly because of his salary and age.
The former Real Madrid and Juventus player finally resigned himself to staying at Old Trafford. As a result, throughout this season he had to accept the fact that he was struggling more on the bench.
It’s not impossible, Ronaldo will force him to leave again in January 2023, to play in the Champions League
Support for Harry Maguire
Another player who was also shifted to the bench is Harry Maguire. The arrival of Lisandro Martinez in the summer of 2022 changed the composition of the back line.
Manchester United manager, Erik ten Hag, has more faith in the duo Lisandro Martinez and Raphael Varane at the heart of the Red Devils defence. As a result, Maguire was shifted to the bench.
Maguire continued to be the target of criticism during his time at United and made many blunders last season. Even so, he still has support internally, despite being the target of criticism outside the club.
Harry will always play 100 per cent, whether he is a starter or not,” said Williams.
Opinions within the team are the most important. Harry is a top partner. He’s a top captain and a top player,” he continued.