Cristiano Ronaldo to leave Manchester United with immediate effect
Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo is to leave Manchester United with immediate effect.
The decision follows a controversial interview in which the 37-year-old criticised the club and said he had “no respect” for manager Erik ten Hag.
Both parties stated that Ronaldo’s exit was “mutually agreed”.
“The club thanks him for his immense contribution across two spells at Old Trafford,” said a Manchester United statement.
They wished “him and his family well for the future” and added “everyone at Manchester United remains focused on continuing the team’s progress under Erik ten Hag and working together to deliver success on the pitch”.
United are fifth in the Premier League in Ten Hag’s first season as manager, with the season taking a break for the World Cup in Qatar.
Ronaldo is with Portugal at the tournament and is set to captain them in their opening Group H game against Ghana on Thursday.
He talked to the media in Qatar on Monday, saying that he will “speak when he wants” and his row with United will not “shake” the Portugal squad.
Ronaldo, who scored 145 goals in 346 appearances for United, left Juventus to rejoin the Old Trafford club in August 2021 – 11 years after he left to join Real Madrid.
He had just over seven months remaining on his £500,000-a-week contract with United and his departure leaves him free to sign for another club when the transfer window opens in January.
“Following conversations with Manchester United we have mutually agreed to end our contract early,” said a statement from Ronaldo.
“I love Manchester United and I love the fans, that will never ever change. However, it feels like the right time for me to seek a new challenge.
“I wish the team every success for the remainder of the season and for the future.”