Ronaldo cites ‘heat of moment’ after left off Manchester United squad for Europa League showdown with Fortuna
Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal has admitted his decision to leave Cristiano Ronaldo out of the squad for a Europa League game against Fortuna Dusseldorf has left him in “turmoil”.
Ronaldo made his debut in the competition as United beat Fortuna 1-0 on Thursday and he celebrated the win with a picture of himself with Wayne Rooney on Instagram.
Asked whether Ronaldo’s omission was an “oversight” or a “mistake”, Van Gaal said: “Oh no, I don’t think so.
“For a long time, I have not told you the real story with Ronaldo, and I don’t think there will be many people who will read the truth. I have made my decisions.
“The heat of the moment was on me, it was my decision. I don’t think of it [as a mistake]. There was no decision to make in the summer, I made it this year.
“When you want to tell something to the media, it is natural to give the media some information. That is why there is a reaction.
“I am calm, I am calm about it. I don’t have another player, because I just told the truth, because people think Ronaldo has left the club.”
Van Gaal’s comments come after Ryan Tunnicliffe, a fellow Dutchman, accused him of failing to support his key player. Tunnicliffe said Van Gaal had told him: ‘You’re not a United fan or have any experience of United, so don’t argue.
“Van Gaal doesn’t seem to love playing with Ronaldo and doesn’t appear to care about him. Van Gaal told me, ‘Now, Ryan, you’re not a United fan and have never watched United, so don’t argue’ – it was so unbelievable.”
Van Gaal has long been unhappy with Ronaldo’s performances this season and has been angered by the club’s lack of movement with regard to the €100m release clause in his contract.
Ronaldo’s form was seen as the main reason for Van Gaal’s decision to leave Zlatan Ibrahim