Cristiano Ronaldo is leaving Manchester Unitedby mutual agreement with immediate effect, the club have announced. The move comes after the forward made a series of damning allegations in an interview.
United had appointed lawyers to explore potential action against Ronaldo for alleged breach of contract but their preferred option was to engineer his departure and that was confirmed on Tuesday.
“Cristiano Ronaldo is to leave Manchester United by mutual agreement, with immediate effect,” the club said. “The club thanks him for his immense contribution across two spells at Old Trafford.”
Ronaldo’s allegations included that he is being forced out by the club, that senior executives lacked empathy after his newborn son died in April, that the owners, the Glazer family, do not care about the club, and that the manager, Erik ten Hag, does not respect him.
“Following conversations with Manchester United we have mutually agreed to end our contract early,” Ronaldo said. “I love Manchester United and I love the fans, that will never ever change. However, it feels like the right time for me to seek a new challenge.”
The 37-year-old had been instructed not to return to the club’s Carrington training base after his World Cup participation with Portugal. On Monday at a press conference in Qatar he described himself as “bullet proof” and expressed no regret at his behaviour. “I don’t have to worry what others think,” he said. “I talk when I want to.”
With United intent on being rid of Ronaldo and the player wanting to leave the question was how – and how swiftly – his departure would unfold. The episode, and two instances since the summer of Ronaldo leaving Old Trafford early, bring an inglorious end to his United career.
Ronaldo had a supremely successful six years at the club that ended in 2009 and his return in summer 2021 was greeted ecstatically by supporters.