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Manchester Evening News
Manchester Evening News
Ricky Charlesworth & Stephen Killen

Roy Keane slams Erik ten Hag for showing 'disrespect' towards Cristiano Ronaldo in Manchester United derby defeat

Roy Keane has blasted Erik ten Hag's decision to not bring on Cristiano Ronaldo during Manchester United's horror defeat to rivals City.

United were easily brushed aside 6-3 at the Etihad but Ten Hag raised eyebrows by electing not to summon Portuguese superstar Ronaldo from the substitutes' bench. The 37-year-old has started just one Premier League game this season and his only club goal came in the Europa League, from the penalty spot.

Last summer saw Ronaldo let it be known that he wished to move on but a move away never materialised. Now, his ex-United teammate-turned-pundit Keane believes Ten Hag is showing disrespect to the veteran forward. Keane says United should have allowed him to depart if they were not going to give him sufficient game time this term.

Read more : Every word of Keane's furious United rant following City humbling

Speaking on Sky Sports , Keane said: "I think United are just showing disrespect to Ronaldo, he should’ve been let go before the end of the transfer window.

"The manager said he’s holding onto him. Okay, you need options but you don’t keep hold of Ronaldo to sit on the bench. He’s one of the greatest players ever, this idea that he had no options - that’s rubbish.

"He had options, he had four, five good options. The manager brought on (Anthony) Martial who scored two but generally speaking, the bigger picture, he’s not going to play Ronaldo, we’ve seen him play a few European games, it’s just going to get uglier as the season goes on.

Roy Keane says United chief Erik ten Hag should have allowed Ronaldo to leave in the summer rather than fester on the subs' bench. (Sky Sports.)

"Okay, Ronaldo’s motivated with the World Cup coming up but if he’s sitting on the bench for Man United week in, week out, it’s not good. It’s just going to get ugly. I think United have showed nothing but disrespect to Ronaldo and they should’ve let him go when he had the chance to go. He had options, I know that for a fact, holding on to him to sit on the bench is ridiculous for a player of his stature. Could he have brought him on? Course he could’ve, so what if you’re 4-0 down?

"You look at his goal record it’s as good as anyone for putting the ball in the back of the net. People are obsessed with the pressing side of the game but you put the ball in the right areas he’ll score goals."


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