Recent times have not been kind to Cristiano Ronaldo and his fans. 2022 was a difficult year for the 37-year-old Portuguese superstar footballer. Manchester United fans are curious to see how their club would fare without his presence in the squad. And the results speak for themselves, as United’s Premier League just restarted. Now, the football world has begun to wonder if Manchester United is actually better off without Cristiano Ronaldo.
United’s record without Cristiano Ronaldo
- Manchester United cruised past Nottingham Forest with a 3-0 home victory at Old Trafford. Goals came from Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Fred.
- United is now 5th in the Premier League standings, four points clear of Liverpool. Pundits have claimed that Manchester United looks threatening as a team without Cristiano Ronaldo.
- The team now seems formidable without Ronaldo’s poacher profile upfront. Young players like Rashford move faster and press higher, benefitting new manager Erik Ten Hag’s tactics.
- Furthermore, the negative factor of difference at least according to stats was Cristiano Ronaldo. Manchester United have a 0%-win percentage whenever CR7 and Harry Maguire have started together.
Man United’s win percentage with and without Cristiano Ronaldo this season 👀 pic.twitter.com/fllrBMGRgt
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) November 17, 2022
- Furthermore, the club looks more settled in the bench and the locker room after subtracting ego clashes and drama off the field.
Poor season and exit
- CR7 parted ways with United, following the infamous interview with British broadcaster Piers Morgan. He attacked the club’s management and owners for the way they treated him.
- Erik Ten Hag benched Cristiano Ronaldo after his poor performances. This resulted in public walkouts and ego clashes.
- Under new manager, Erik Ten Hag, Manchester United were off to a shaky start in the early season. But they picked themselves up soon with convincing wins against Liverpool, Arsenal, and Tottenham.
Ronaldo’s return to Manchester United
- Cristiano Ronaldo had a fairytale return to Old Trafford in 2021, scoring a brace on his comeback debut against Newcastle United.
- Despite having a great individual season with 18 goals in his tally, Ronaldo could barely carry United to a Europa League spot.
- Manchester United finished sixth on the table with Ronaldo, in stark contrast to their second position from the year before without Ronaldo.
Tough times for CR7 fans
- Cristiano Ronaldo’s drop in form was evident with the Portuguese national team at the World Cup. Just like Ten Hag, CR7’s national manager Fernando Santos benched him at the knockout stages of the tournament.
- To make things worse, his longtime rival Lionel Messi arguably ended the GOAT debate by winning the World Cup and a record-second Golden Ball.
As of now, Cristiano Ronaldo is now clubless and rumored to move to Saudi Pro League club Al-Nassr FC. His fall from grace at the club that made him a superstar has extracted a heavy toll. Do you think Manchester United are better off without Cristiano Ronaldo?
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