Manchester United isn’t exactly in mourning without Cristiano Ronaldo.
While the Portuguese superstar will always be a club legend, there’s no denying that the humiliating nature of his departure just a few weeks ago has tainted his legacy.
When it became clear that he would not be a regular starter under Erik ten Hag, Ronaldo expressed his displeasure, culminating in his refusal to play against Tottenham Hotspur and subsequent interview with Piers Morgan.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner’s declaration that he did not respect the new Red Devils coach signaled the end of Ronaldo’s second stint at Old Trafford.
And, with the 2022 World Cup providing the ideal opportunity for the 37-year-old to get away from it all, it was eventually decided that player and club would part ways early.
What did Manchester United sɑy about Ronaldo in their programme?
When United returned to action against Burnley in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday, you’d never guess it was the first time a club legend had waved goodbye.
For starters, in the matchday programme, the Red Devils wrote: “Cristiano Ronaldo left the club by mutual agreemeɴt last month.
“The Portuguese superstar scored 145 goals across two spells and 436 appearances, and helped us win three Premier League titles, one FA Cup, two League Cups, the Champions League and the FIFA Club World Cup. In 2008, Ronaldo was also named Ballon d’Or winner.
“In a statemeɴt issued on November 22, the club expressed its appreciation for Cristiano’s enormous contribution and wished him and his family well in the future.”
What is the new Ronaldo chant among Manchester United fans?
Fans lining the four stands of the ‘Theatre of Dreams’ were even less sympathetic, expressing their displeasure with a new chant about the former number seven.
Hundreds, if not thousands, of United fans could be heard singing their new song, “I don’t care about Ronny,” as Christian Eriksen and Marcus Rashford scored to help Ten Hag’s meɴ to a 2-0 victory in the post-Ronaldo era.
Some fans may recall that the chant first surfaced in early November, but this latest rendition is both the most widespread we’ve seen so far and one given extra oomph by the fɑct that Ronaldo has now officially left the club.
The lyrics are fairly simple: “I don’t care about Ronnie. Ronnie is uninterested in me. “MUFC is all I care about.”
And, let’s face it, there’s no twisting or misinterpreting the moral of the story.
Furthermore, it’s easy to see why fans would feel betrayed by Ronaldo because, while he had a number of valid complaints about the club, a number of his commeɴts to Morgan, as well as much of his behavior prior to that, showed a lot of disrespect for United.
And, as Sir Alex Ferguson would readily admit, no one is bigger than the club.