Cristiano Ronaldo’s bitter departure from Manchester United would have been handled very differently had Ralf Rangnick got his way.
On August 27, 2021, Ronaldo sent shockwaves around the footballing world when he returned to Old Trafford.
However, the fairytale reunion many supporters had envisaged didn’t quite go to plan, with the Portuguese superstar leaving the club by mutual consent after a public row with Erik ten Hag.
But the situation could have been very different had former United interim manager Rangnick got his way.
According toThe Athletic, Rangnick “proposed to football director John Murtough and chief executive officer Richard Arnold that Ronaldo be sold, and replaced, during the January transfer window”.
The report adds that there were several emails and messages exchanged on the matter, but Murtaugh and Arnold went against the German’s advice.
Rangnick allegedly believed “it made sense to act sooner rather than later to reconfigure the side’s attack”, while Ronaldo’s playing style didn’t match the manager’s high-pressing game plan.
Ultimately, Ronaldo left the club as a free agent in November 2022 after an explosive interview with Piers Morgan, in which the five-time Ballon d’Or winner aimed Ten Hag.
He has since become the poster boy for the Saudi Pro League, joining Al Nassr where he has continued his excellent goal-scoring record at the grand old age of 38.
However, fans may look back and wish Rangnick had got his way in the first place and the club could have cashed in on the former Real Madrid star.