CRISTIANO RONALDO’s desire to leave Manchester United has hurt morale at Old Trafford.
So says his former team Louis Saha, who played alongside the 37-year-old during his first spell at the club between 2004 and 2008.
Ronaldo is keen to leave the Red Devils to play Champions League football this season.
He was unable to join the United squad on his pre-season tour of Asia and Australia for “family reasons” before returning to Rayo Vallecano earlier this month.
But he caused outrage when he left ten minutes before the final whistle in the friendly – in which he was hooked at half-time.
Despite picking up a minor injury, Anthony Martial was benched in Sunday’s 2-1 defeat by Brighton, where he came on as a second-half substitute.
Although he could be called back into the starting XI after boss Erik Ten Hag insisted United are better with him on the pitch.
Saha criticized the five-time Ballon d’Or winner last month but has insisted he doesn’t want his legacy at the club to be tarnished.
Speaking exclusively to SunSport on behalf of TPP-ThePuntersPage, the 48-year-old said: “I really don’t know about Cristiano Ronaldo.
“I made some comments a few weeks ago saying I’m not happy that he’s such a big player and such a role model for young players.
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“He can clearly see that the manager has some strong decisions to make and I feel like he did exactly the opposite.
“When you try to bring discipline and he doesn’t want it or has other ideas, then it’s hard and I think he took it personally.
“The coach is trying to build a collective and a squad with a foundation and every time he speaks he gets sucked into the Cristiano Ronaldo saga.
“It’s not an easy situation and I would say I was on Cristiano’s back a bit. The criticism was strong, if he finds a suitor then you can go.
“But if not, then you need to come out and talk; if he wants to leave he should say so, but also say he will give 100 per cent to the club if it doesn’t happen or until it happens.
“At least the saga with Cristiano would be over by then but we didn’t see that so as a Manchester United fan I was frustrated.
“I’m still a huge Cristiano Ronaldo fan, I love what he did for the game and I still admire his talent today because he’s still a great player.
“But at that point the talk of his future was really bad when it came to building a team collective.
“It’s not part of Cristiano Ronaldo’s legacy because he didn’t deserve it.
“For the fans, it’s about being a bigger fan of the club than a fan of Cristiano Ronaldo, which has to be the same for every player.”
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/5970111/man-utd-cristiano-ronaldo-louis-saha/ Cristiano Ronaldo saga has damaged morale in Man Utd squad but fans should NOT allow legacy to be tarnished, says Louis Saha