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Juan Mata reveals his reaction to Manchester United resigning Cristiano Ronaldo



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Credit: YouTube / Russell Howard

Juan Mata has revealed his reaction when Manchester United announced that they had resigned Cristiano Ronaldo in 2021.

Cristiano Ronaldo‘s second spell at Manchester United may have been short, but the drama and brilliance it conjured were, at its peak, fantastic to watch.

Ronaldo spent just 14 months during his second time at Old Trafford and played under three managers during that time: Ole Gunnar Solskjær, who brought him in, Ralf Rangnick, who managed in an interim after the Norweigan’s sacking, and Erik ten Hag, who effectively kicked him out of the squad.

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He scored 25 goals during his only full season back at the club, including some fantastic moments in the Champions League and Premier League, but he was then axed after conducting an unsanctioned interview lamenting the state of the club before his move to Saudi Arabia.

Juan Mata, who played for one season with the Portuguese marksman at United before he left as a free agent in 2022, has explained that when Ronaldo signed, he thought United could win the Premier League again.

“When United signed Cristiano, I thought we could win the Premier League again,” adding, “He had such high standards that he could drag the rest with him. I always thought that when it came to the 80th minute of a game, the ball had to go to him to win.

“He always appeared in decisive moments. However, circumstances around him prevented him from getting more quality minutes in his second season. I connected with Cristiano during many conversations. He’s a much closer person than people imagine.”

Ronaldo’s time back at United did not quite conjure the success Mata thought it might, with the club finishing sixth in the Premier League.

They were knocked out of the FA Cup in the fourth round against Middlesbrough on penalties, lost in the third round of the Carabao Cup against West Ham, and out of the Champions League during the Round of 16 against Atletico Madrid.

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