Edinson Cavani influencing Man United youngsters.
Edinson Cavani is providing more of a ‘unifying’ presence in the Manchester United dressing room than Cristiano Ronaldo, The Athletic is reporting.
When Ronaldo returned to Old Trafford in August, it was thought that he would become a source of inspiration for the players who were already at the club and for a while at least, it appeared that this was the case.
Cristiano Ronaldo signing hasn’t gone to plan.
Jadon Sancho, Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard were among those who celebrated the signing on social media and after Ronaldo scored a brace in his second Man United debut against Newcastle in September, it seemed like the only way was up for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.
Fast-forward four months and Solskjaer has been sacked, United are seventh in the table and Ronaldo has suggested that some of the club’s younger players are failing to take his ideas on board.
The Athletic have backed up this claim but not for the reasons Ronaldo thinks, as the publication reports that the 36-year-old isn’t as approachable as fellow veteran Edinson Cavani.
Edinson Cavani is “more unifying”.
“Several of United’s younger players feel Ronaldo can be difficult to approach, with sources suggesting Cavani, even in broken English, is a more unifying presence,” an article published on Friday states.
Cavani, then 33, joined United at the beginning of last season and it could be argued that he already had the impact on the dressing room that the club thought they were getting when they brought back Ronaldo.
After a relatively slow start to his debut campaign, the Uruguayan then burst into form, scoring 10 Premier League goals as United finished second behind local rivals Manchester City.
Cavani also struck six times during the club’s Europa League run, including in May’s final in Gdansk, which they would ultimately lose on penalties to Villarreal.
Edinson Cavani’s influence.
All the while, it appeared as though he was guiding young players such as Mason Greenwood, notably rushing to the academy product’s aid when he was set upon by Roma players Gianluca Mancini and Rick Karsdorp in the Europa League semi-final.
“There are times when you’re out there when I believe you need to protect and stand up for one of your teammates,” Cavani said afterwards.
“In that incident against Roma, what I felt was that he was arguing face to face with the Roma defender which is something that can happen in football.
“The next minute, a third guy came on the scene and began pushing him when he clearly wasn’t part of the original argument. I told him he should keep out of the incident and that’s why I went to help Mason and offer him some protection.”
Cavani v Ronaldo.
After initial indifference at Cavani’s arrival, the former Paris Saint-Germain striker quickly became an Old Trafford fan favourite, with two dedicated chants regularly being sung at him from the Stretford End.
Meanwhile, United supporters continue to debate whether Ronaldo’s return has been beneficial to the club or if it has upset the Old Trafford apple cart.