'Unrealistic' Cristiano Ronaldo is 'only thinking about himself' and has not shown that he is a Manchester United supporter by demanding to leave, blasts his former Old Trafford team-mate Louis Saha 

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'Unrealistic' Cristiano Ronaldo is 'only thinking about himself' and has not shown that he is a Manchester United supporter by demanding to leave, blasts his former Old Trafford team-mate Louis Saha

  • Louis Saha calls Cristiano Ronaldo's expectations for the Red Devils 'unrealistic'
  • Frenchman says his former team-mate is only thinking about himself in exit saga
  • Ronaldo still expects to leave the club despite United continuing to stand firm 
  • Erik ten Hag to decide on Ronaldo in his starting XI against Brighton on Sunday

Ex-Manchester United striker Louis Saha has hit out at his former team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo, suggesting his demands to leave and subsequent behaviour have been selfish.

Ronaldo requested to leave Old Trafford during crunch talks last month and did so again upon his belated return to training last week.

Ronaldo made an emotional return to Old Trafford last summer after departing for Real Madrid in 2009, signing a two-year deal with the Red Devils with the option of a third.

Wantaway star Cristiano Ronaldo returned to the pitch for Manchester United last weekend

Wantaway star Cristiano Ronaldo returned to the pitch for Manchester United last weekend

Wantaway star Cristiano Ronaldo returned to the pitch for Manchester United last weekend

Former team-mate Louis Saha (centre, pictured in 2007) blasted Ronaldo's exit demands

Former team-mate Louis Saha (centre, pictured in 2007) blasted Ronaldo's exit demands

But a disappointing season last term, culminating in the club missing out on Champions League football has led to Ronaldo requesting an early exit - much to the dismay of Saha.

'In some way, from Cristiano Ronaldo's point of view it's a bit unrealistic to ask now a club of this size to adapt to him and his dream,' Saha told SkyBet.

'Even last year, I'm sorry but the magic could have happened and everything could have gone well and they won the Champions League and the Premier League and there we go, he could say that he could stay because he had participated in that. It was unrealistic that just his arrival would have changed all this.

'Asking that again after a poor season and maybe not great transfer market business in his view, I don't really understand how dramatic it is to change and to do all those things. I think that last year he had been in Juventus but they hadn't won the Champions League.'

Louis Saha spent four injury-ravaged season's at Manchester United between 2004 and 2008

Louis Saha spent four injury-ravaged season's at Manchester United between 2004 and 2008

Saha's annoyance at how the saga has unfolded will come as a welcome boost to the club's fans who remain frustrated by the summer's activities.

The start of Erik ten Hag's tenure was supposed be the dawn of a new era of optimism but instead United are having to publicly deal with off-field conflict, whilst No 1 transfer target Frenkie de Jong stalls over a switch to the North West.

But Saha still clearly has the club's best interests at heart and accused the five-time Ballon d'Or winner of 'thinking about himself' rather than putting the club first.

'I'm not Cristiano but as someone who seems to be a supporter of Manchester United, I have felt like he hasn’t shown completely enough of that, he is thinking about himself.

Erik ten Hag has had to deal with more drama than expected since taking over as United boss

Erik ten Hag has had to deal with more drama than expected since taking over as United boss

He said: 'I am not going to judge him because he is an immense player and I'm not in his position, but I would have loved him to stay because he's a terrific player. No-one can judge his actions at this moment because it’s his own career.'

It remains to be seen whether or not Ten Hag will select Ronaldo in his starting XI as Manchester United kick-off their Premier League campaign against Brighton on Sunday.

With just four weeks remaining of the transfer window and four fixtures to contest in the month of August, a strong start to the campaign could convince the Portuguese star to stay put and help the club put last season's misery behind them.

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