Ronaldo facing fresh Man Utd storm as bench behaviour details emerge

Erik ten Hag to 'deal with' Cristiano Ronaldo after early exit down tunnel

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Cristiano Ronaldo could have landed himself in hot water with Manchester United head coach Erik ten Hag after refusing to come on as a substitute during the win over Tottenham, according to reports. The Portuguese superstar is already facing a possible fine for leaving the pitch by storming down the tunnel before the final whistle and his actions have prompted fury around in the incident.

The 37-year-old was named on the bench once again by Ten Hag for the crucial fixture at Old Trafford and cut a frustrated figure as he watched his team-mates grab a deserved 2-0 victory thanks to goals from Fred and Bruno Fernandes. And according to the Daily Mail’s Chris Wheeler, Ronaldo refused to come on when requested by his manager.

It is clear he took exception to being left out by the Dutchman and he could face a heavy punishment for his actions. Fans then noticed that Ronaldo threw a strop as he walked towards the tunnel in the corner of Old Trafford before the 90th minute had passed, and it later emerged the Portuguese left the stadium altogether while his team-mates celebrated their win in the dressing room.

A club statement confirmed on Thursday that he will be dropped from the squad for their next match: “Cristiano will not be part of the Manchester United squad for this Saturday’s game against Chelsea. The rest of the squad is fully focused on preparing for that fixture.”

Ten Hag, who put on young forward Anthony Elanga instead after replacing Jadon Sancho, insisted after the game that he would decide on how to deal with the incident on Thursday. 

“I was there, I did see him but I haven’t spoke to him,” the 52-year-old told Amazon Prime after the game. “I will deal with that tomorrow [Thursday], we are celebrating this victory and now we have to recover from this on Saturday against Chelsea, another big game and that’s what makes the Premier League so exciting.”

It is understood that the club could fine the Portuguese forward over the incident, while Ten Hag has decided to punish Ronaldo by dropping him from the squad to face Chelsea on Sunday in a remarkable power move from the United boss. He will not be allowed to train with the senior squad as part of his exile from the team.

Ronaldo ‘dropped’ by Ten Hag as Man Utd boss makes verdict on stop
Man Utd dressing room reaction to Ronaldo leaving stadium
Martinez’s telling reaction as Ronaldo storms down tunnel

Tensions have boiled over in recent weeks after Ten Hag left Ronaldo as an unused substitute during the 6-3 Manchester derby defeat earlier this month.

When asked about why he did not opt to use Ronaldo from the bench, Ten Hag said he did it out of “respect for his big career”.

While that particular move from Ten Hag attracted criticism, Ronaldo’s latest strop is unlikely to be viewed with sympathy from the United fanbase and beyond after the Red Devils dominated Tottenham without him. 

Ten Hag’s side are up to fifth and can climb above Chelsea into fourth if they are victorious at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. Meanwhile, Ronaldo will be left to lick his wounds and likely train on his own after failing to get his way.

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