Cristiano Ronaldo is not expected to feature in Manchester United’s pre-season friendly against Atletico Madrid on Saturday while he works on his fitness.
Ronaldo missed the club’s pre-season tour of Thailand and Australia through ‘personal reasons’ and is yet to take part in team training, having returning to Carrington earlier this week to reiterate his desire to leave the club.
United held a behind-closed-doors friendly against Wrexham on Wednesday, allowing new signings Lisandro Martinez and Christian Eriksen to get a run-out as the Red Devils picked up a 4-1 win, but Ronaldo watched on from the sidelines.
With a week to go until the start of the Premier League season and United determined to keep hold of the veteran striker, the focus is now on rebuilding Ronaldo’s fitness and The Times state that he will not feature against Atletico while he focuses on individual work.
Ronaldo has been linked with a move to Atletico this summer, although Rojiblancos president Enrique Cerezo has cooled the speculation and a section of supporters of the Madrid side have been protesting a possible transfer – something which drew a response from Ronaldo on Instagram.
United’s final pre-season game will come against Rayo Vallecano on Sunday at Old Trafford, before their Premier League campaign gets underway with a visit from Brighton on 7 August.
We understand that Ronaldo will not refuse to play under Erik ten Hag if he is not granted a move away from the club.