Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag feels that Cristiano Ronaldo must adapt to his style of play to feature for the team, especially in the big games.
The Portuguese ace, who was keen to leave Old Trafford this summer, ended up staying at the club after failing to negotiate a move away. However, his form hasn’t been inspiring so far this season, failing to score or assist in five league appearances, having also missed almost the entirety of pre-season.
Ten Hag was asked if he has any concerns about using Ronaldo in big games, to which he responded (via Sky Sports):
“He showed it (his abilities) last year and not that long ago, so now he needs to fit in our way of playing; if he does that, he will decide the games because of his capabilities.”
The 37-year-old ace rejoined United last season and struck 24 goals in all competitions, but that wasn’t enough for them to finish in the top four or win a trophy.
Unconvinced by their ability to compete for trophies, he sought a move away. Although many clubs were linked with him, nobody launched an official bid for Ronaldo, even on deadline day.
Ronaldo, who has another year on his contract, has been used sparingly by Ten Hag in the new season. The star has clocked only 175 minutes of action in five league games so far, starting one.
As Anthony Martial is out injured, the former Real Madrid ace could see more game time, even possibly starting against Arsenal today (Sunday).
Ronaldo boasts a good record against the Gunners, netting eight goals in 17 appearances, including three in two league games last season.
Manchester United face their toughest test yet
Manchester United host an in-form Arsenal at Old Trafford tonight (September 4) in what’s set to be their toughest test of the league season yet.
The Gunners are the only team in the division to have won all five of their games, a first since the 2004-05 season.
Mikel Arteta’s side agonisingly missed out on UEFA Champions League qualification last season following a late collapse. However, following a promising pre-season, they have hit the ground running.
In a further boost, Arsenal have also lost just one of their last eight top-flight games against Manchester United, but that loss was at Old Trafford last season.