The first half of Cristiano Ronaldo’s interview with Piers Morgan has aired, and the Manchester United forward has addressed a number of points as aired on Wednesday.
Among the topics discussed were the move to Manchester City – which Alex Ferguson helped prevent. Moreover, Ronaldo has also named Roy Keane as his favourite captain to play under, amongst many other issues.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s interview with Piers Morgan – everything the Portugal captain said
On the topic of young players at Manchester United and beyond:
“They [the young players] live in a different era. My kid is 12-years-old, the mentality is not the same. The anger [is the difference], they have things more easily. They don’t suffer. And they don’t care. I don’t mean only a few at Manchester United, I mean in all teams.
“The new generation and the new technologies, they distract them. But they are not the same [in the way] that they listen but this is why we have two ears, as you listen from one side and they go away from another side,” Ronaldo said.
“So, it doesn’t surprise me. But in the same way, it’s a little bit [of a] shame because if they have the best examples in front of eyes, and if they don’t, at least copy what [they] did.
“For me, it’s kind of weird, because I remember when I was 18, 19, 20, I always looked to see the best players: [Ruud] Van Nistelrooy, [Rio] Ferdinand, Roy Keane, and [Ryan] Giggs – this is why I have the success that I have and longevity. Because I take care of my body, my mentality, my head, because I see these guys and I learn from them.”I’m not the kind of guy who likes to give advice as I prefer to be an example. Because I’m an example. I’m there every morning and do the same stuff. I’m probably the first one to arrive and the last one to go out. I think the details speak for itself. As I told you before, they listen to one thing and in two minutes they have already forgotten and do what they think is better. This is why I say, I like to lead by example and some ones they follow me – but not much.
Asked whether they are interested in listening to his advice, Ronaldo replied: “They don’t care – some, yes, but most of them, no. But for me that is not surprising because they are not going to have longevity in their careers. It is impossible. In my generation you see many players reach 36, 37, 38 at a high level and I think this generation you will count on one hand how many will reach that level.
On which players he admires right now
Asked which players he admires in the modern day, Ronaldo responded: “I only can say what I see from my eyes. In Manchester United, I can mention Dalot. An example he is young and very professional. I have no doubt he will have longevity in football. He’s young, smart, intelligent and he’s very professional.
“We have a few young ones more, but it’s difficult. Probably Martinez, Casemiro is in his 30s – but I’d say Dalot.”
“Of course, we have to call [him that] because he assumed the job regardless.
“All the coaches that I had in my career, I call them boss because if they assume the job we have to call in that way.
“But in the end, deep inside me, I never saw him as the boss because I saw some points [where] I never agreed [with him].
On the topic of Ralf Rangnick being appointed Manchester United manager
When asked if he felt that Rangnick and his coaching team knew what they were doing, he added: “No, they [did not]. They knew the club very well. But they [did not] know the main dimension of the club inside, the history of the club. Which, for me, surprised me even more.
“When you sack Ole Solskjaer, you should bring in a top manager, not a sporting director.
“Of course [it was ridiculous], you have to be honest. If you are not even a coach, how are you going to be the boss of Manchester United? They have not followed the right way to follow the likes of Liverpool or Manchester City.
“They are a few steps behind. They should improve and change that staff or the directors, the presidents. I don’t know who is the problem there.” “I love Solskjaer. I think he was a top person, because what I keep inside my heart, it’s the heart of the person. And Ole for me, is a top person.
“It’s hard. It’s hard to assume [the role] after Sir Alex Ferguson, but I think he did a good job for sure.
“You need much more time. But I never doubt that [he is] going to be a good coach in the future. But it was a good experience. I was so pleased to work with him even for a short period.”
On Ronaldo’s expectations upon returning to Manchester United
“When I signed for Manchester United… I thought everything would be different, you know, the technology, the infrastructures and everything. But I was surprised, in a bad way, let’s say in that way, because I saw everything was the same.
“They stopped on a clock, in my opinion, which is something that surprised me.
“At United, the progress was zero, in my opinion. To compare with Real Madrid and even Juventus, they follow the rest of the world. So the technology, especially in terms of training, nutrition and conditions of eating properly and recovering 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. They are not in that level. But I hope the next years they can reach to be in a top level.
“I don’t know what’s going on but since Sir Alex Ferguson left I saw no evolution in the club, the progress was zero.”
The second half of the explosive interview is expected to air tomorrow, in which Ronaldo will address topics about his personal life and his relationship with Erik Ten Hag.