sport news Cristiano Ronaldo re-signing for Man United messed up Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's ...

sport news Cristiano Ronaldo re-signing for Man United messed up Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's ...
sport news Cristiano Ronaldo re-signing for Man United messed up Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's ...

Cristiano Ronaldo's sensational return to Manchester United in the summer ruined now sacked boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's plans for the new season, according to Paul Merson. 

The Portugal international returned to Old Trafford from Juventus in a £19.8million deal after the Norwegian - who was axed on Sunday after three years in charge - saw his side finish second behind Manchester City in the Premier League in 2020-21.

But before the 36-year-old deadline-day arrival, United had handed a one-year extension to veteran striker Edinson Cavani and had signed Jadon Sancho in a £73m deal from Borussia Dortmund

Cristiano Ronaldo re-joined Man United from Juventus in the summer

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was axed by United on Sunday after three years at the helm

Cristiano Ronaldo's return to Manchester United ruined Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's plans for the new season, according to Paul Merson

But Merson feels the latter two deals indicated Solskjaer's plan to continue building on United's counter-attacking style, which the ex-Arsenal midfielder believes is no longer plausible with Ronaldo up front. 

The 53-year-old also claims United are not a better team with Ronaldo in it, and that he was only signed to keep him out of the clutches of their city rivals. 

'I feel sorry for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer,' Merson wrote in his Sky Sports column.

'He had a plan at the start of the season, having finished second last season. He's chased Jadon Sancho for a long time, got him in, and he's given Edinson Cavani another year. 

United extended Edinson Cavani's deal by a year after finishing second in the Premier League

United extended Edinson Cavani's deal by a year after finishing second in the Premier League

United then signed Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund in a £73m deal in the summer

United then signed Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund in a £73m deal in the summer

'Then, just before the season starts, he gets given Ronaldo. I think he's thrown it all out of the window. From day one, they're not a better team with Ronaldo in it.

'You don't go 29 games unbeaten away without playing a certain way, and bringing Sancho in gave them another weapon to play that way. With Ronaldo up there, you don't have that weapon to play on the counter-attack any more.

'It's all snowballed for Solskjaer. He had a plan, and the Ronaldo situation threw it all out of the window, just before the season started. 

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