'Ten Hag has to have power over Ronaldo'

World News

Incoming Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has been advised to establish his "power" over Cristiano Ronaldo in order for their relationship to work next season.

The Portuguese star has been United's standout performer in what has been an underwhelming campaign for the club, with the forward having scored 24 goals and provided three assists in 38 matches across all competitions.

Scroll through the gallery above to see United's top scorers across all competitions this season, per BBC Sport

However, Ronaldo's role in the squad has continued to be questioned in some quarters, and there have been suggestions that the team cannot be rebuilt around him given his age and supposed lack of work ethic off the ball.

With Ten Hag set to arrive at Old Trafford at the end of the season, there has been speculation about the 37-year-old's future at the Theatre of Dreams, despite the player still having another year remaining on his deal in Manchester.

Former Aston Villa striker Gabby Agbonlahor has now insisted that, while he does not think Ten Hag will look to sell Ronaldo, the Dutchman has to exert his power over the five-time Ballon d'Or winner in order for their relationship to work to the benefit of the team.

"I don't think Ronaldo being there is going to be a problem," the ex-England international told Football Insider.

"What's going to be a problem is Ten Hag is going to come in and say to Ronaldo, 'I want you to stay but I'm going to play you in the games I want you to play in, I'm going to bring you off when I want to bring you off. I want to choose a team to win a game and you might not be starting that game. If you show dissent walking off the pitch, I'm not going to play you.'

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"He's got to have that power as a manager. If he doesn't then it's going to be another scenario where the player is bigger than the manager and the club.

"There's going to have to be a talk about it. If Ronaldo says, 'No, I'm not going to do that, I want to play every game', then maybe Ten Hag makes the decision and says, 'You have to leave.'"

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