Cristiano Ronaldo must either change his game or accept he will not start every match if he wants to stay at Manchester United next season, warns Gary Neville
- Gary Neville says Cristiano Ronaldo must change his game or risk not starting
- Ronaldo, 37, continues to be linked with a move away from Old Trafford
- The Portugal international has endured a difficult first season back at United
- Neville insists the Red Devils’ next boss will want to build around young players
Manchester United legend Gary Neville has claimed Cristiano Ronaldo should change his game or risk not starting every match next campaign.
Ronaldo, 37, continues to fire on all-fronts for the Red Devils, and most recently netted a hat-trick in United’s 3-2 home win over Tottenham on Saturday, becoming football’s all-time top scorer.
According to the official FIFA records, Ronaldo’s new total of 807 goals saws him overtake Josef Bican’s previous record of 805 to stand alone as the game’s greatest goalscorer.
Cristiano Ronaldo, 37, has endured a difficult first year back in the Premier League
Neville believes the Portugal international must change his game ahead of the new season
But Neville insists the Portugal international needs to change his game should he want to feature in every game next season under United’s new manager.
‘I’m unsure, it depends who the manager is and what the project is for the new manager. Does he want to build a young squad that’s athletic and progressive? Ronaldo can play in that – but if he wants to play every single week, which would seem to be the case, then it may be that the manager wants a fresh start.
‘He might want young players that are basically pressing high from the front and can create high level of play in that way.
‘If he wants to play in a different way and can accept that he will have a great goalscorer in the team who is basically someone who has basically been the greatest goalscorer of all time then yes there will be a position for him.
‘But I think it would have to be a Ronaldo that would accept that he wouldn’t play every single week and there would be moments that he wouldn’t play and I think that’s the big thing.
‘He doesn’t seem to take that too well, which is a good thing, he’s obviously driven and wants to play every single match. But I’m 50-50, and I’m not just 50-50 from a point of view of whether the club wants to keep him but whether Cristiano wants to stay in Manchester and play at the club sort of into his 38th and 39th year.’
Ronaldo has been heavily linked with leaving Old Trafford at the end of the current campaign
The United star is likely to end the season without silverware for the first time in 12 years
Ronaldo had been widely tipped to leave the club at the end of the current campaign should United fail to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
Ralf Rangnick’s side have not won a trophy since 2017, and this season is likely to be the Portugal international’s first without silverware for 12 years.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner is hopeful the club bring in the right appointment when Rangnick moves into his consultancy role in the summer, and one where is able to express himself under.
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