Ten Hag: Ronaldo refused to act as sub

Manchester United coach Erik ten Hag has confirmed Cristiano Ronaldo refused to come on as a substitute against Tottenham Hotspur and says the Portuguese superpower is now training outside the first-team squad.

Ronaldo was an unused substitute in Wednesday’s 2-0 home win and walked through the tunnel with minutes left of the game after being left on the bench again by ten Hag.

Ronaldo has subsequently been left out of the squad that will play against Chelsea on Saturday.

“Yes,” ten Hag told reporters on Friday when asked whether the 37-year-old had refused to fill in for the Spurs game.

“I’m the manager, I’m responsible for the culture here and I have to set standards and values ​​and I have to control them. In the team we have values ​​and standards and I have to master them.”

“It will be (a) reflection for him, but also for everyone else. Football is a team sport and you have to meet certain standards. And I have to master it.”

Wednesday was not the first time Ronaldo had left the stadium early before a United game this season had ended, having left for the final whistle during an exhibition game against Rayo Vallecano.

However, Ten Hag insisted that it is not the end for Ronaldo at United.

“After Vallecano I told him it was unacceptable… this is the second time, there are consequences. We will miss him tomorrow.”

“It’s a miss for the team, but it’s important for the attitude and mentality of the group and now we have to focus on Chelsea because that’s important.

“The statement is also clear. He remains an important player in the team.”

The two teams meet on Saturday at Stamford Bridge, where Chelsea, unbeaten in seven games in all competitions under new coach Graham Potter, will host a United team that has won four of their last five encounters.

Ten Hag confirmed that Frenchman Anthony Martial will also be absent because he is still injured.

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