Cristiano Ronaldo set to miss Atletico Madrid friendly after being ‘well behind the rest of the group in terms of fitness’ after delayed Manchester United return: Reports

Manchester United are expected to travel to Norway for their friendly against Atletico Madrid without Cristiano Ronaldo, according to The Daily Telegraph.

Manchester United’s failure to secure Champions League football has unsettled Ronaldo. It emerged earlier this month that the forward has asked the Red Devils to allow him to leave if they receive a suitable bid this summer.

Several clubs, including Chelsea and Bayern Munich, have since been linked with a move for the 37-year-old, who did not turn up for pre-season until this week. However, he has struggled to attract serious transfer interest ahead of the 2022-23 campaign.

Ronaldo returned to Carrington for showdown talks this week and reiterated his desire to leave via agent Jorge Mendes. However, Manchester United maintain that that he will not be allowed to leave.

Cristiano Ronaldo has arrived back at Man United’s training ground this morning 👀

Despite the differences, the forward has been tipped to train with professionalism under Erik ten Hag until his future is resolved. He is said to have taken part in his first-ever training session under the Dutchman on Monday.

Ronaldo, though, is deemed to be ‘well behind the rest of the group in terms of fitness’, according to the aforementioned source. He is thus expected to miss the Red Devils’ pre-season friendly against Atletico Madrid on Saturday (July 30).

The five-time Ballon d’Or award winner is tipped to stay behind in Manchester as Ten Hag and Co. travel to Oslo. Saturday’s match against Atletico Madrid will be the Old Trafford outfit’s penultimate friendly, ahead of their season opener against Brighton & Hove Albion on August 7.

It is worth noting that new signings Lisandro Martinez and Christian Eriksen could be a part of the squad flying to Norway. The former Ajax players, like Ronaldo, arrived at Carrington this week.

Cristiano Ronaldo could miss Manchester United’s season opener against Brighton

The Red Devils will take on Rayo Vallecano in a friendly at Old Trafford on Sunday (July 31). Cristiano Ronaldo could feature in that match, when Erik ten Hag is expected to play fringe players and youngsters, as per the report.

Cristiano Ronaldo, though, is still likely to miss out on a starting place in Ten Hag’s team to face Brighton next weekend. Anthony Martial, who has started in each of Manchester United’s four friendlies so far, is tipped to operate as the number 9 against the Seagulls.

It remains to be seen if Ten Hag intends to reinstate the forward back in the starting XI if he stays put. It is also unclear whether the player’s future will be resolved in time for the team’s match against Brighton.

Edited by Dakir Mohammed Thanveer

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