07 Mar 2022 | 10:41
Pep Guaridola talks about Ronaldo
United are a club that has had 99 problems, and Ronaldo added just one after his return last year. It’s a big event, because he’s a big player and creates media buzz for whatever he does. However, United did not lose because of Ronaldo, just as they did not win because of him alone.
He could play on Sunday night and Man City would still win, maybe even with the same score. Gone are the days when CR7 could change such games. Before Christmas, Ronaldo still scored the most goals for MU, but since scoring twice against Arsenal on December 2, he has only put the ball in the net of two top relegation candidates Burnley and Norwich, plus with Brighton. United have won only 2 of the last 7 matches that he has appeared in.
This is only the second game that Ralf Rangnick has lost during his time as interim coach. However, those numbers don’t tell the whole picture. Manchester United is an elite club. They should win most of their matches.
For an elite club, a draw is like a loss, unless they are playing against a team of the same level. So while Rangnick hasn’t officially lost to Newcastle, Aston Villa, Burnley, Southampton and Watford – even Middlesbrough in the FA Cup, those are their failures.
This is a team that has lost its way. Harry Maguire is no longer at the level he was at Hull, let alone Leicester. Scott McTominay’s fierce dedication will likely move United fans, but the reality is that he won’t be a regular starter in central midfield in any of Manchester United’s squads. In the Premier League era, the same thing happened with Fred.
Speaking before the game, Rangnick said Manchester United could not make any more mistakes in the transfer market. Their mistakes cost a lot of cash. Romelu Lukaku, Alexis Sanchez, Donny van de Beek, even Maguire.
At first, however, few expected they would be in trouble. These are good players, MU is even considered the cause of their decline. If Harry Kane goes to Manchester City, the audience knows he can be the one to take home the Champions League for them. If he arrives at United this summer, another disaster could be created.
On Sunday, Rangnick confirmed Ronaldo was out of action because of a hip problem, while on social media there were claims that he was healthy and ready to play. One such conspiracy theory was liked by Ronaldo’s sister. Even Roy Keane found Rangnick’s explanation absurd. If CR7 does not have physical problems, the Red Devils have 101 problems to solve.