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‘Sunday, the king plays’ – Cristiano Ronaldo confirms Manchester United return in pre-season friendly against Rayo

Ronaldo will be part of the Red Devils in the game against the Spanish side Rayo Vallecano.

Abhishek Sandikar Author

Updated - 30 July 2022 1:27 pm

Lothar Matthaus

After weeks of constant rumours and speculation, Manchester United forward Cristian Ronaldo has finally updated about his future on Instagram. Ronaldo announced that he will be playing the friendly game against Spanish club Rayo Vallecano on Sunday at Old Trafford. 

While commenting on an Instagram post about his exclusion from the squad for the Atlético Madrid friendly, the five-time Ballon D’or winner commented: “Domingo o rei Joga,” – “Sunday, the king plays.” If CR7 does get on the field it will be Ronaldo’s first match for the Red Devils since the club’s 4-0 defeat at Brighton & Hove Albion FC on 7 May.

The reports surrounding his departure have been ruling the roost as the Portuguese striker still wants to play in the Champions League.  Ronaldo and his agent Jorge Mendes held meetings with Manchester United executives at Carrington on Tuesday regarding the move as his stance remained unchanged. 

Reports had also surfaced about how Mendes was offering CR7 to multiple clubs out of which Premier League side Chelsea FC and German Champions Bayern Munich FC emerged as favourites. But both these teams since have denied any such developments. Another shocking club in the mix was Atlético Madrid, local rivals of Ronaldo’s previous team Real Madrid. 

As the reports around this rumour made the news cycle, the Atletico fans unabashedly expressed their discontent with this transfer. During their preseason friendly against third-tier Spanish club Numancia at the Estadio Municipal de El Burgo de Osma, fans brought out a banner saying – ‘CR7 NOT WELCOME’. 

But despite all these rumours, Erik Ten Hag and Manchester United have been adamant about not selling Cristiano Ronaldo. When asked about CR7’s future, the Dutch manager said, “We are planning for Cristiano Ronaldo for the season and that’s it. I’m looking forward to working with him. Cristiano is not for sale. He is in our plans and we want success together.”

Manchester United squad for Atletico Madrid friendly in Oslo: 

Goalkeepers: David De Gea, Tom Heaton, Matej Kovar.
Defenders: Diogo Dalot, Ethan Laird, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Tyrell Malacia, Lisandro Martinez, Alex Telles.
Midfielders: Christian Eriksen, Bruno Fernandes, Fred, James Garner, Scott McTominay, Facundo Pellistri, Donny van de Beek.
Forwards: Anthony Elanga, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho.

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