Cristiano Ronaldo’s private stance on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as Manchester United manager isn’t known. However, his public one is.
And, as the Norwegian fights to save his job, the Portugal international has already made it clear to the Glazers his former team-mate needs time to get the best from his players at Old Trafford.
United’s season started so brightly, with the club winning three of their first four matches against Leeds, Wolves and Newcastle respectively.
But, ever since a 2-1 Champions League defeat to Young Boys in Switzerland, the Red Devils have come undone.
United are currently on a run of six defeats from their last 12 matches across all competitions, leading to scrutiny over Solskjaer’s position in the process.
Ronaldo has been a positive throughout that run, with the Portugal international netting nine times since returning.
Yet the brutal fact of the matter is that United are nowhere near where they should be.
Ronaldo’s private thoughts on Solskjaer aren’t currently known, even if it did emerge he feels standards at the club have slipped.
It’s also been reported the Portugal international has told his team-mates to maintain their intensity regardless of the speculation surrounding the club at present.
However, speaking last month, the veteran did make it clear he feels Solskjaer needs time to get the best from his squad – in comments that could be behind the Glazers’ current reluctance to wield the axe.
“We are in a moment in my opinion that Manchester (United) do a few changes; they buy me, they buy (Raphael) Varane and (Jadon) Sancho,” he said.
“The adaptation will take time, even the system of the game that we play, but I think step by step we have to put it in our mind that everything is possible.
“I don’t speak only about my individual stuff, I put the collective in first place.
“To win things as a collective, it’s more easy to win individual stuff, I still think it’s possible.”
Ronaldo also made it clear in the same interview that United players, as well as their coaching staff, should shoulder the blame.
“We have to [take responsibility],” said Ronaldo.
“To play for Manchester United and to be a coach of Manchester United you will always be criticised, and you have to accept that it’s part of the business to criticise you.
“You play for one of the biggest clubs in the world, all eyes are on you and it is normal. You have to deal with it.
“The coaches, the players, when we lose we are in the same boat, when we win it is the same.
“You have to deal with the pressure, the pressure is here, it will continue to be here when you win or lose and you have to deal with that.
“It is part of the job.”
For now, the Glazers are hesitant when it comes to sacking Solskjaer.
However, that hasn’t stopped a host of names being linked with the job.
Top of the Red Devils’ shortlist appears to be Brendan Rodgers and Mauricio Pochettino, despite their commitments at Leicester and Paris Saint-Germain respectively.
And the likes of Ralf Rangnick and Erik Ten Hag have been linked, too.
United’s next match, against Watford after the international break, is on November 20.
And there’s nothing to indicate Solskjaer won’t be in charge for that game, despite his side’s issues.