Cristiano Ronaldo part of Erik ten Hag’s vision
New Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has said that Cristiano Ronaldo is part of his plans for the club, ending speculation over the Portuguese forward’s future.
Ten Hag was unveiled as the United boss on Monday and while he avoided making grandiose promises, the Dutchman was clear when asked at his first news conference if Ronaldo was in his plans.
“Of course,” he said before being pressed on what he thought the 37-year-old could bring to his team. “Goals,” he replied.
Ronaldo scored 24 times in the Premier League and Champions League this season after returning to United from Italian club Juventus but was criticised by interim manager Ralf Rangnick over his lack of contribution to pressing of opponents.
With Ten Hag taking charge and bringing in former England manager Steve McClaren and ex-Ajax Amsterdam assistant Mitchell van der Gaag as part of his coaching team, Rangnick will be restricted to a consultant role.
But asked whether he welcomed such a role for the German, who is also coach of the Austrian national team, Ten Hag was far from effusive.
“That’s on the club,” he said. The Dutchman was also careful to avoid making commitments on when United, who finished sixth in the Premier League, would be back competing for titles.
“I don’t think about that at this moment. I’m thinking that this is a project and it takes time. We want to win every game. We go from game to game and then we’ll see,” he said.
“I want to build and construct a team who are battling for each other, who are unified and who will get results. Also we are playing in the Theatre of Dreams. We want to entertain. But in the end, the intention is to play fantastic football,” he added.