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SPORTS UPDATE

Ronaldo feels wrath of Man United fans after leaving friendly ‘early’

Cristiano Ronaldo appeared to leave Manchester United’s friendly with Rayo Vallecano early, intensifying the scrutiny over his Old Trafford future.

Ronaldo wants out of the club as United have no Champions League football this season.

He played the first 45 minutes of Sunday’s friendly against Rayo Vallecano and received a rapturous reception from United fans in attendance.

But a United fan on Twitter posted two pictures of Ronaldo outside the stadium, claiming the Portugal star left before the final whistle in the game.

‘The king is gone’ the fan wrote with a crying emoji next to it. Another meanwhile said: ‘Probably the last time we’ll see him in ot [Old Trafford] which is a shame to say.’

But not all United fans responded to the picture with sadness.

‘The disrespect this man shows, not even [Paul] Pogba was this disrespectful,’ said one United supporter.

Another wrote: ‘Can’t stress how bad of a look this is by Cristiano, both in terms of professionalism but also as an example to the youngsters who all played today. Don’t care who you are. Bin.’

Another simply added: ‘Embarrassing’, while others looked at the situation more cynically, with one stating: ‘Keeping himself match fit for potential new club!!’

Other users were far from impressed too, with one posting: ‘Unacceptable Behaviour if we’re being honest,’ while another described Ronaldo as a ‘classless professional’.

Ironically, despite the fact Ronaldo is pushing to leave, United shared a video on their Twitter before the match of him entering the stadium captioned: ‘Cristiano – arriving at Old Trafford’.

He was then named in the starting XI to face the Spanish side, but showed his rustiness by blazing a shot into the stands after trying to find the top corner with a close-range strike.

And after his uneventful return to the fold, he was replaced by Amad Diallo at half-time at Old Trafford.

The youngster went on to have an instant impact in the second half, scoring three minutes after the break, only for Alvaro Garcia to equalise for the visitors in the 1-1 stalemate.

Ronaldo’s departure from Old Trafford before the final whistle has now seen further wrath directed in his direction.

It follows a week in which both sides dug in – with Ronaldo reiterating his desire to leave United in pursuit of Champions League football and the club once again insisting he wouldn’t be sold.

Ronaldo swept back into the club’s Carrington training ground accompanied by his agent Jorge Mendes earlier in the week.

He met with the new United boss for a debrief of their pre-season trip and with the club’s hierarchy over his future, in which neither side’s position budged.

The player’s issue is that one-by-one all potential suitors have ruled out taking on the burden of his £360,000-a-week wages, even if Ronaldo has suggested he will take a pay cut.

Atletico Madrid were the latest to turn him down following a backlash from fans towards a player who remains a legend across the city at the Bernabeu.

On Wednesday, Ronaldo trained away from the main group as he looks to build up his sharpness and he watched the behind-closed-doors friendly against Wrexham.

It remains to be seen what part Ronaldo will play in United’s Premier League season opener at home to Brighton next Sunday.

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