A divisive opinion…
Graeme Souness has a controversial take on the Cristiano Ronaldo transfer situation, insisting Manchester United should go out of their way to keep him.
Ronaldo has played only 45 minutes in pre-season, after publicly expressing his desire to leave the club for a Champions League side.
It would be a bold move to throw Ronaldo straight back into the team after such a controversial pre-season, but Souness believes he is too good to leave out.
Ronaldo was United’s top scorer last season, and scored more than the rest of United’s forwards combined, but it would potentially undermine Erik ten Hag if he is not punished for his antics.
Graeme Souness on Cristiano Ronaldo
Speaking to talkSPORT, he said: “I would have tried to have nipped it in the bud before now. I’d have got in front of him as soon as possible.
“We all know how the game works, his people and [agent] Jorge Mendes will have been speaking to clubs and asking if they could afford him.
“I don’t believe that he’s gone out on a limb and said that he wants to leave without having something going on in the background.
“Whoever it is, it seems that there is still somebody out there for him but they’re not willing to show their hand.”
He continued: “From Man United’s point of view, you try to keep him. There’s an argument to say that he’s the greatest player ever to kick a football – his stats and his longevity would suggest that.
“I would keep him. He doesn’t get goals against the big teams, the game passes him by a bit and he plays the width of the box, but he does get goals. We all know how important goals are to the cause as you can be not playing very well but if you’ve got a goal-getter then it makes you look like a very different team.
“Goals are everything and it’s the hardest job on football. I’d go out of my way to keep him.”
Souness’ Sky Sports colleague Jamie Carragher disagrees, saying that United should get rid of Ronaldo as quickly as possible.