Is Cristiano Ronaldo the problem or the solution for Manchester United? | Sports News


Naomi Baker

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Cristiano Ronaldo has scored ten goals and 13 appearances for Manchester United this season

Naomi Baker

After Cristiano Ronaldo helped send Manchester United to the top of the Premier League with a scintillating brace in a 4-1 win over Newcastle in mid-September, something special was happening at Old Trafford.

Almost three months later, however, the start of the fairytale has turned into a horrific horror spectacle.

Lacking clear direction and under the guidance of inexperienced interim boss Michael Carrick, Manchester United are struggling to keep pace with the Premier League’s top four and are at 125-1 to claim the title.

A saving grace was their qualification for the knockout stage of the Champions League, thanks in large part to Ronaldo’s six goals in the group stage, but more United loyalists are blaming the Portuguese icon for the club’s recent implosion.

So, is Ronaldo the problem or the solution for United this season?

Those who are skeptical of the 36-year-old’s contributions are quick to point out that when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was sacked on Sunday it meant it was the fourth consecutive season that Ronaldo was at a club the manager has left for, suggesting that the player has a habit of interfering with the dynamics of the team.

In 2018-19, Max Allegri asked the club to transfer Ronaldo after one season, but their refusal to do so prompted the Italian to leave and his replacement Maurizio Sarri also disagreed with the former one. Real Madrid star.

Andrea Pirlo also struggled with Ronaldo in the squad, but that could have been due to his inexperience in the dugout.

In each of those three completed seasons, however, Ronaldo has scored 32%, 37% and 33% of Juve’s goals in all competitions and the result is that he was signed by United to put the ball to the bottom. of the net.

On the basis of this criterion, he excelled.

Ronaldo has scored ten times in 13 appearances in all competitions this season, making him United’s top scorer and raising the question: where would they be without him?

He has bailed out the club in home and away games with Atalanta and against Villarreal, single-handedly dragging them into their Champions League squad.

Former club Juve, meanwhile, have hardly improved since leaving.

But others argue those goals aren’t worth the way he forced the tactical system to change.

Ronaldo isn’t known for his pressing and his average of 5.14 presses per 90 minutes is the lowest of any forwards in the league this season. But even if he did become a master presser, Scott McTominay and Fred’s terrible midfielder pivot would have to improve for this approach to work anyway.

Bruno Fernandes has also declined since Ronaldo arrived, having failed to achieve any shot on target in his last seven league games, but the midfielder has already impressed behind the five-fold. Ballon d’Or winner for Portugal and he just seems to lack confidence.

Simply put, there are far bigger issues to deal with at United than having the Ronaldo scoring machine in their ranks.

Their midfielder is devoid of strength, Harry Maguire has been chaotic and they have long lacked a cohesive game plan.

Blame Ronaldo if you will, but you miss the big picture.


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FIRST PUBLISHED AT 3:00 PM, NOVEMBER 25, 2021



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