Cristiano Ronaldo has said that he feels that he is being coerced by Manchester United to leave the club.
Ronaldo had earlier promised in August that he would give his version of his time at Old Trafford after failing to secure a move away from United to a club playing in the Champions League, as he had hoped.
The Portuguese five time Ballon d’Or winner has now broken his silence in a wide-ranging interview with Piers Morgan for TalkTV.
Fans have been waiting for Manchester United to make a response to Ronaldo’s claims.
United, who beat Fulham 2-1 on Sunday, are fifth in the Premier League in manager Ten Hag’s first season in charge.
When asked if United’s hierarchy were trying to force him out of the club, Ronaldo said: “Yes, not only the coach [Erik ten Hag], but another two or three guys around the club. I felt betrayed.”
When quizzed again if senior club executives were trying to oust him, the 37-year-old said: “I don’t care. People should listen to the truth.
“Yes, I felt betrayed and I felt like some people don’t want me here, not only this year but last year too.
Ronaldo has been absent on the pitch due to an unspecified illness since he captained United in their 3-1 defeat at Aston Villa on November 6th.
He was dropped for the Premier League game at Chelsea last month by Ten Hag after refusing to come on as a substitute against Tottenham three days earlier.
“I don’t have respect for him because he doesn’t show respect for me,” Ronaldo told Morgan.
“If you don’t have respect for me, I’m never gonna have respect for you.”
The interview will be shown over two nights on Wednesday and Thursday.
Ronaldo also talks to Morgan about the loss of his baby son in April and how touched he was by a tribute paid to him by the Liverpool fans at a game against United at Anfield in the days afterwards.
The whole interview is 90 minutes long but Morgan has written a version for the Sun newspaper in which it is clear the contempt Ronaldo has for how he has found United since he returned to the club amid huge fanfare in August 2021.
“I think the fans should know the truth,” he says. “I want the best for the club. This is why I came to Manchester United.
“Since [former manager] Sir Alex [Ferguson] left, I saw no evolution in the club. Nothing had changed.
“I love Manchester United, I love the fans, they’re always on my side. But if they want to do it differently… they have to change many, many things.”
Ronaldo says his view of the club is shared by Ferguson, who was pivotal in his return to Old Trafford from Juventus when it appeared he might join Manchester City.
“He knows better than anybody that the club is not on the path they deserve to be,” added Ronaldo.
“He knows. Everyone knows. The people who don’t see that, it’s because they don’t want to see; they are blind.”