Cristiano Ronaldo is BENCHED for Manchester United’s Premier League opener against Brighton as Erik ten Hag leaves the wantaway forward out in his first competitive game in charge
- Cristiano Ronaldo was left on the bench by Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag
- Marcus Rashford will play up top instead in their first league game of the season
- The Portuguese star has openly said this summer that he wants to leave the club
- The saga of whether he will stay or go has undermined Ten Hag’s first summer
- Before the game, 37-year-old forward Ronaldo declared himself ‘ready’ to play
Cristiano Ronaldo has been left on the substitutes’ bench for Manchester United in Erik ten Hag’s first competitive game in charge.
The Red Devils host Brighton in their first game of the Premier League season at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon.
But wantaway star Ronaldo will have to sit among the replacements, with Marcus Rashford playing up front instead.
Cristiano Ronaldo (pictured) has been left on the substitutes’ bench for Manchester United
United face Brighton on Sunday, kicking off at 2pm BST, in their first Premier League game of the season and the first competitive game under new manager Erik ten Hag (pictured above)
The Portuguese forward has openly stated his desire to leave the club this summer for Champions League football after United’s poor season left them in the Europa League.
The ongoing saga of whether he will stay or go has undermined new manager Erik ten Hag in his first summer.
Dutchman Ten Hag labelled Ronaldo’s decision to leave Old Trafford before the end of United’s last friendly, after being substituted off, ‘unacceptable’.
The wantaway star had insisted he was ready to play before the game on Instagram (pictured)
Pundit and club icon Gary Neville said he was ‘disappointed’ with Ronaldo for creating a ‘messy’ start to Ten Hag’s new era, while Wayne Rooney has urged United to sell his former team-mate.
In the wake of an injury to Anthony Martial, the likely starter up front if fit, Ronaldo had declared himself ‘ready’ to play against Brighton on Instagram.
Jadon Sancho and Bruno Fernandes will play behind lone striker Rashford, with a midfield three of Fred, Scott McTominay and Christian Eriksen. In defence, Lisandro Martinez makes his competitive debut, with new signing Tyrell Malacia on the bench.