Cristiano Ronaldo advised how to approach potential relationship with Antonio Conte at Manchester United
Current affairs at Manchester United have never been so messy. After the 5-0 destruction at the hands of bitter rivals Liverpool, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s managerial tenure appeared to be as good as over.
It goes without saying Conte is an incredible manager with the CV to back it up. As with any potential manager being linked with a move to a new club, the candidate will be scrutinised and assessed for any weak spots. One aspect which raises questions is how Conte would cope with big personalities such as Cristiano Ronaldo.
In MEN’s latest Facebook Live, United on my Mind writer Omar Garrick was accompanied by the chief correspondent of Football Italia- Richard Hall. The pair had an in-depth conversation on how Conte would fare with big players such as Ronaldo.
RH: “The bond that Lautaro and Lukaku had (during Conte’s time at Inter Milan) just clicked from the off and that’s the one worry I’d have if Conte went to United. The whole relationship with Ronaldo would be fascinating to watch.
“It’s a hard one because most players appreciate what Conte has done in the game but he’s all over players and pulls them up if they’re not working. He’s the boss and that won’t change even for a player like Ronaldo.
“If he doesn’t feel that Ronaldo is not having the ideal game or not following instructions, Conte would pull him off the pitch. Ronaldo has worked with a lot of different coaches and if he gave Conte the respect he gave Zidane for instance then I don’t think there would be a problem.
“But with those sorts of players, it would take Ronaldo to think ‘you’re the boss I’m going to do what you say’, and if he does that, great.”
OG: “In the past when teams haven’t been playing well when Ronaldo is there it’s well documented how unhappy he gets. We’ve seen that at United in the 1-1 draw with Everton and saw how much media attention it got.”
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RH: “He was unfortunate in a way to have those coaches and come into Juventus at that time. Under Allegri, they were winning everything but not in the style that the fans wanted and weren’t winning in Europe. The obsession with the Champions League in Turin is phenomenal.
“Ronaldo was a shining piece so the pressure was there. He never had the same system or coach and he’s highly debated in Italy about his time there. Did he make Juventus a success?
“Absolutely not. Was he a success on his own? Without a doubt. “What you get is an awful amount of goals and following on social media and so on but it’s a 50/50. It’s unfair to say he’s a failure because the goals he scored were tremendous but it was Europe he was brought in to win”.
OG: “It’s an interesting one with Ronaldo as he’s been criticised for his lack of pressing and that’s the way Ole wants to play but he scores so many goals so it’s hard to drop him.”
How do you think Ronaldo and Conte would get on? Follow our United on my mind trends writer Anil Kandola and Football Italia correspondent Rich Hall and let us know your thoughts in the comments section below