Legendary Dutch player Marco van Basten has insisted that new Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag will be able to coexist with Cristiano Ronaldo and claimed that there is no reason to drop the forward if he continues to score goals. Ronaldo will enter the last year of his deal next season.
Cristiano Ronaldo joined Manchester United from Juventus in the summer for an initial 15 million euros reported fee as he looked to continue his legacy with the English club in his second spell at the club after leaving the club for Real Madrid in 2009.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has been in stellar goalscoring form for the English giants although he has been unable to arrest United’s inconsistent form this campaign. Despite United’s lackadaisical performances in domestic and European competitions, the mercurial Portuguese has scored 22 goals and three assists in 36 appearances across all competitions.
The Manchester club are set to welcome current Ajax boss Erik ten Hag as their new manager ahead of the 2022-23 campaign and rumours have started to mount over whether a 37-year-old Ronaldo can cope up with the Dutch boss’ intense pressing style.
Reports have also suggested that the Portuguese attacker could move onto greener pastures if United fails to secure a Champions League berth this season. Van Basten has proclaimed that United and ten Hag would ideally love to keep Ronaldo for his goalscoring prowess.
"If Ronaldo carries on playing like he did last week [against Norwich] and scores two or three goals in a match on a regular basis, there is no need to take him out of the team. Ronaldo is a player who does his own thing, but as long as he delivers, you have to give him a place in the team. Ten Hag will take into account that he cannot ask the same things physically from Cristiano Ronaldo that he will be asking of an 18-year-old,” Van Basten told The Rondo Show.
"Of course Ronaldo will need to work hard – but I am sure he will work hard because I can see Ten Hag having an influence on him to get him to play how he wants,” he added.