Manchester United boss Ralf Rangnick tipped Cristiano Ronaldo to become a manager after he retires, adding that the Portuguese star will someday understand why a player of his status needs to be substituted in certain situations.
Ronaldo was noticeably frustrated when taken off in Man Utd’s recent win over Brentford, drawing criticism for his reaction to being taken out of the game.
But Rangnick doesn’t interpret Ronaldo’s outburst as a sign of disrespect, but rather an emotional reaction to a situation that a manager cannot look at with emotion.
What was said?
“I didn’t at all see or interpret that he was challenging me,” Rangnick said. “He just showed maybe too emotionally that he was not happy to be replaced. But, as I said, this was not the first time.
“I think if you have a look at the moment when Sir Alex [Ferguson] replaced or other coaches like [Maurizio] Sarri or whoever in the past, his reaction was pretty similar, which shows, in the end, it has got nothing to do with the manager at the time. It’s about his own ambition and his own desire to stay on the pitch.”
He continued: “I think at one stage Cristiano will also be a manager himself, maybe in a couple of years or maybe in 10 years if he plays another five years, and then he will have the same experience himself. I don’t blame him for that but, obviously any manager, I think it shouldn’t be too emotional.
“Also, in front of the TV cameras, I don’t think that this will be for the benefit of anyone; not to his benefit, not to the benefit of the team-mates. In the end, it’s an emotional game and players are being emotional and I didn’t take it personally at all.”
The incident happened in Man Utd’s 3-1 win over Brentford, which served as Ronaldo’s first appearance since suffering a hip injury in early January.
Once Mason Greenwood put Man Utd 2-0 up after 70 minutes, Rangnick chose to take Ronaldo out of the game and bring on Harry Maguire, much to the Portuguese star’s frustration.
“Why me? Why me … Why would you take me off?” he was seen saying as he trudged off the pitch before having a conversation with Rangnick on the bench.