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Erik ten Hag should have been stronger against Cristiano Ronaldo - John Giles

Erik ten Hag needs to be stronger against Cristiano Ronaldo after his lack of discipline, says John Giles.

John Giles joined The Football Show to discuss Cristiano Ronaldo and Erik ten Hag.

Manchester United are in a permanent state of controversy.

Most of it surrounds their former superstar player in the form of Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese striker refused to come off the bench for United two weeks ago. He was disciplined by the Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag and then he was returned to the squad.

Erik ten Hag is receiving plaudits for his handling of the situation.

Ten Hag likely would have kicked Ronaldo out of the club if his stature wasn't what it is. It's his second time leaving a match early for Manchester United this season, with the other one coming in the preseason. Ten Hag played down the incidents and quickly moved past them by handling them swiftly.

But John Giles thinks he needs to do something more drastic with Ronaldo. Giles wants Ronaldo released and thinks ten Hag should be stronger. Nathan Murphy asked Giles if ten Hag handled it well and he responded:

"No," Giles said frankly.

"I think he's handled it very, very badly. This is the second time that he's done that, that he didn't go on. That's a very, very serious position to be in. Last week he wanted him to go on against Spurs, he didn't and cleared out of the dressing room. It's very hard to have a team and get team spirit with that going on.

"Now he's saying 'It's okay, we've had a chat with him and he's back in the squad again.' I don't see that. You're talking about morale and team spirit, you don't get it like that. He's back in again now, everything is forgiven.

"I don't think you can forgive things like that, especially when it's happened twice.

"You have to clamp down on it and say right, you've got to get out of here."

Manchester United must continue to develop with or without Cristiano Ronaldo. They are an inconsistent team that needs to return to the Champions League, but if Ronaldo acts up again he will be a major distraction to the rest of the squad.

He will likely behave before the World Cup so he can play a bit, even if it's just off the bench. But after the World Cup he will have no reason to behave himself and that's when the real problems could arise.

Ronaldo needs Manchester United more than Manchester United need Ronaldo, but that won't be the case for much longer. Realistically, both parties would be better off without each other at this point.

That's especially true for Erik ten Hag's rebuild, but it's still not likely to happen until the end of the season.

Eddie Howe has no shame.


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Cristiano Ronaldo John Giles Manchester United