Ronaldo arrives at Man United’s training base, set for talks

Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo arrives at Carrington Training Ground, Manchester, England, Tuesday July 26, 2022. (Peter Powell/PA via AP)

MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Cristiano Ronaldo arrived at Manchester United’s training ground with his agent on Tuesday with the Portugal great’s future at the English club up in the air.

Ronaldo has yet to start preseason training with United — he missed the team’s tour of Thailand and Australia — and is set to hold talks with recently hired manager Erik ten Hag.

Ronaldo’s agent, Jorge Mendes, was pictured in the car driven by Ronaldo entering United’s Carrington training base.

British broadcaster Sky Sports News reported that Alex Ferguson, the former United manager who signed Ronaldo for the player’s first spell at the club from 2003-09, arrived at Carrington earlier Tuesday. Ferguson played an influential role in persuading Ronaldo to return to United last year.

The 37-year-old Ronaldo reportedly wants to play for another team after only one year back at Old Trafford, with United not in the Champions League this season or in shape to compete with the best teams in England. United finished in sixth place in the league last season, 35 points behind first-place Manchester City.

United has said Ronaldo has not returned to training yet because of “personal reasons.” Ten Hag has repeatedly said he is counting on Ronaldo being part of the squad this season.

If United does allow Ronaldo to join another club, it leaves ten Hag short of center forwards in his squad and with little more than a month left in Europe’s summer transfer window to bring in a replacement.

In Ronaldo’s absence, Anthony Martial has been playing up front and impressed on the preseason tour, scoring three goals in four games.

Martial spent the second half of last season on loan at Sevilla last year, scoring one goal, so it could represent an unlikely second chance for the French striker.

Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani was one of the players to leave United during this offseason because his contract expired.

United has been linked with the signing of Ajax forward Antony.