As Cristiano Ronaldo’s Manchester United future hangs in the balance, the Portuguese forward has reportedly instructed agent Jorge Mendes to help him find a new club.
United’s top scorer only returned to Old Trafford over the summer, but is believed to have issued an ultimatum to the club as dissatisfaction grows under Ralf Rangnick.
The interim manager is expected to take up a consultancy role after his managerial contract ends and the conclusion of the 2021-22 season, but has not ruled out remaining in his current position for longer.
Ronaldo is believed to be one of a number of United players unhappy with the situation around the club, with the Mirror exclusively revealing the number seeking to leave has reached double figures just weeks into Rangnick’s tenure.
Ronaldo has top-scored for United since returning to the club over the summer, and is the only squad member in double figures for goals at the halfway point of the season.
However, he is believed to have grown disillusioned with Rangnick’s tactics and style of play as United attempt to kick-start their season.
According to Sport, he has instructed Mendes to find him a new club if United’s “erratic” behaviour on and off the field continues.
United sit seventh in the Premier League, four points adrift of the Champions League spots, and Rangnick is the third different man to sit in the dugout this term after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s sacking and Michael Carrick’s caretaker stint.
Citing agent Mendes’ strong relationship with Barcelona director of football Mateu Alemany and president Joan Laporta, Sport has suggested the Catalan club could be a potential destination for Ronaldo.
Barca have experienced financial difficulties of late, with the struggles affecting their ability to register new signing Ferran Torres.
However, even if the multiple La Liga champions are not a realistic destination, United’s failure to reassure Ronaldo over the future direction of the club could still be enough to keep him from seeing out the two-year deal he signed over the summer.
Rangnick has called for professionalism from his squad amid reports that a number of unhappy players could look for a new employer.
“We have players with contracts expiring in the summer, we have maybe also one or two players who want to leave and who are under contract,” the interim manager said.
“It’s about the players dealing with that in a professional way, to show in training, to show up, when they get chance to play.
Paris Saint-Germain manager Mauricio Pochettino has long been one of the contenders to take over from Rangnick ahead of the 2022-23 season, though Ajax boss Erik ten Hag has also been strongly linked with the role.