World Cup 2022: Cristiano Ronaldo to leave Manchester United ‘with immediate effect’

Doha, Qatar — Cristiano Ronaldo will leave Manchester United “with immediate effect”, the Premier League club announced on Tuesday.

The 37-year-old forward’s contract termination comes after he gave a explosive interview in which he criticized manager Erik ten Hag and the club’s owners.

It wasn’t immediately clear where he would end up next after failing to secure a move to a Champions League club in the summer.

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“Following discussions with Manchester United, we mutually agreed to end our contract early,” Ronaldo said. “I love Manchester United and I love the fans, that will never change. However, it seems the right time for me to seek a new challenge.

“I wish the team every success for the rest of the season and for the future.”

Ronaldo, who is currently with Portugal in Qatar to win his country’s first World Cup title, previously made it clear he wants a transfer after being reduced to a fringe member of the squad this season.

He got his wish on Tuesday when United confirmed his departure.

“Cristiano Ronaldo will leave Manchester United by mutual consent with immediate effect,” the statement said. “The club thank him for his immense contribution in two games at Old Trafford, scoring 145 goals in 346 appearances, and wish him and his family all the best for the future.”

The statement failed to express United’s dismay following Ronaldo’s unauthorized interview with Piers Morgan.

The Portugal captain said he felt “betrayed” during a 90-minute discussion in which he also criticized younger players.

United said last week they had taken appropriate steps in response to his comments, with his contract being widely expected to be terminated.

Copyright © 2022 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. World Cup 2022: Cristiano Ronaldo to leave Manchester United ‘with immediate effect’

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