Cristiano Ronaldo liked a birthday post from Manchester United’s official Instagram account after unpleasantly departing the club.
The 39-year-old forward had his contract mutually terminated at Old Trafford before joining Al-Nassr in January 2023. Before his exit, the Portuguese icon seemingly fell out with manager Erik ten Hag and spoke about the deficiencies at the club in an infamous interview with Piers Morgan.
During his chat with Morgan in November 2022, Ronaldo said (via Sporting News):
“At United, the progress was zero, in my opinion. To compare with Real Madrid and even Juventus, that they follow the rest of the world, so the technology, especially in terms of training, nutrition and conditioning, eat properly and to recover better than before – surprised me.”
“Manchester right now to compare with that club, I think it’s behind in my opinion, which is something that surprised me. A club with this dimension should be the top of the tree in my opinion and they are not, unfortunately,” he added.
Despite his second stint at Manchester United ending on a bitter note, the Red Devils are aware of the five-time Ballon d’Or winner’s contributions during his initial stay between 2003 and 2009. Overall, Ronaldo scored 145 goals and provided assists 64 in 346 appearances across competitions for Manchester United.
It isn’t surprising to see Ronaldo react to the post, given that his performances at the club helped him secure a reported €94 million move to Real Madrid in the summer of 2009.
He won three Premier League titles and a UEFA Champions League trophy, among other honors, with Manchester United.
Manchester United striker names Cristiano Ronaldo as the player he idolized growing up
Manchester United striker Rasmus Hojlund named Cristiano Ronaldo as the player who influenced him the most while growing up. The Denmark international seems to be finding his feet at Old Trafford after a slow start to the season.
Hojlund has scored in each of his last four Premier League matches after failing to find the net in his first 15 outings. Speaking about the Al-Nassr superstar, the former Serie A striker said (via talkSPORT):
“Cristiano Ronaldo was probably the guy. He has always been my idol and I’ve followed the clubs where he’s been and supporting United, they were my first team really.”
“I remember supporting him and following him the next year as well, and following him back again and watching him in the period when he was at Juventus and Real Madrid as well,” the summer signing from Atalanta added.
At Real Madrid, Ronaldo scored a staggering 450 goals in 438 matches across competitions and won the UEFA Champions League four times. The Portuguese ace then bagged 101 goals in 134 appearances in all competitions at Juventus.