Cristiano Ronaldo knew his interview with Piers Morgan would mean the end of his time at Manchester United, the journalist has said.
Manchester United announced on Tuesday that Ronaldo’s contract with the club has been terminated. A statement said Ronaldo’s departure was “mutually agreed”.
Ronaldo’s departure comes after he gave a controversial interview in which he criticized the club and the Glazer family and said he had “no respect” for manager Erik ten Hag.
And on FS1 in the United States, Morgan said he believes the 37-year-old knew the interview would mark the end of his second stint at Old Trafford.
“To be honest, I think he knew,” Morgan said when asked if he thought Ronaldo knew the impact the interview would have.
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“Look, he’s a very smart guy Cristiano, he knows what he’s doing.
“He and I have been in a relationship for a number of years, and when he called me he said, ‘I want to do an interview, I want to say everything.’ I said, ‘If you say everything I think you’re going to say, then you’re probably going to have to leave the club.’ He said, “I know.” So he knew what he was getting himself into.
“He didn’t think it was safe, he didn’t want to say in the interview I’m definitely leaving, I’m going to leave United. But this was a guy who, by the end of his tenure, felt disrespected by the manager, Ten Hag, by the owners he’d said he’d never met (and) by the club’s executives who hadn’t even met him Believe him when he says his daughter is ill.
“So if you put it all together you have one disrespectful guy who I think is the best that has ever played this game. He has said enough.”
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Ronaldo made World Cup history by becoming the first man to score in five tournaments on Thursday, and afterwards commented that the “chapter” of his time at United was closed.
“The most important step was that we won,” he said after the game.
“This chapter will be closed after this week. Now we’re off to a good start. I helped my team and now it’s done.”
Ronaldo scored from the penalty spot on Thursday as Portugal helped defeat Ghana 3-2 in the opening game of the 2022 World Cup.
With his goal, Ronaldo overtook Pele (Brazil), Uwe Seeler (West Germany) and Miroslav Klose (Germany), who all scored four goals.
Only one other footballer has scored in five World Cup finals: Brazilian striker Marta.
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(Photo: Getty Images)