Cristiano Ronaldo appears to be putting in the hard yards after ending his summer exile away from Manchester United.
The Portuguese superstar is back at the club and, while reports over his future continue, the 37-year-old may just have given a very strong hint that he’ll be sticking around at Old Trafford this season.
After missing United’s pre-season tours of Thailand and Australia, Ronaldo was seen reporting for duty at the club’s Carrington training ground on Tuesday this week having spent an extended break back in Portugal.
The forward arrived with agent Jorge Mendes and widespread reports claimed he held showdown talks with Red Devils chiefs over his future, following suggestions he has told the club he wants to leave.
However, Ronaldo recently hit back at the ‘lies’ being said about him.
And he now appears to have sent a message with a latest post on social media, as he looks to make up for lost time as he gets ready for the new season – possibly in Man United colours.
While his teammates were out in Oslo playing Atletico Madrid in their latest pre-season friendly – which ended in a 1-0 defeat – Ronaldo posted a photo on Twitter showing the star alongside a number of United’s young players with the caption: “Working in progress…”
Much has been said about Ronaldo’s commitment and loyalty to the club, with reports that he wants to join a team competing in the Champions League as he looks to extend his competition record of 140 goals and further cement his place in history.
Working in progress…💪🏽 pic.twitter.com/E2G5ZEayeG
— Cristiano Ronaldo (@Cristiano) July 30, 2022
Former Chelsea and Republic of Ireland striker Tony Cascarino is among those to have urged Ronaldo to take on greater responsibility as a leader on the pitch and in the dressing room, rather than focus on his unrelenting pursuit of goals.
But, having appeared to have taken some of the club’s players under his wing, it seems the Portuguese icon is already demonstrating that.
“Ronaldo’s role is not just about getting more goals in the Champions League,” said the Weekend Sports Breakfast host Cascarino.
“Breaking records is great, but he’s at the stage of his career now where the club he’s at is trying to reignite itself and it needs a leader.
“He must be that leader on the football pitch, for them as a team to try and galvanise something.
“If Ronaldo thinks it’s only about his goals, he’ll achieve his goals but the club will still fail.”
That’s something we saw happen last season, as Ronaldo’s 24 goals in 38 games weren’t enough to help United reach any higher than sixth in the Premier League or lift any silverware.
CR7 is an Old Trafford legend and, despite the recent uncertainty surrounding him, is still adored by the club’s supporters.
However, Cascarino has warned he risks ruining his club hero status if he does not commit his future to Manchester United soon.
“You don’t need to rock the boat,” Cascarino added.
“What I’d say to Ronaldo is, for the first time in your life, think about your club, your team.
“The club and fanbase has been unbelievable to you, and you’ve played brilliantly for them. You’ve done so well that they’ve loved you from the minute you arrived and even after you left, as well, and when you came back they adored you, and still do.
“But he’s whittling away at that now, though, because there must be a section of Manchester United fans who have been peed off with his non-commitment to the club.”
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