Cristiano Ronaldo hits back at old Manchester United team-mate Wayne Rooney and aims jibe at his appearance

    Cristiano Ronaldo hits back at Wayne Rooney and aims jibe at his appearance
    The former England striker had criticised Ronaldo’s behaviour (Picture: Getty)

    Cristiano Ronaldo has hit out at former Manchester United team-mate Wayne Rooney over his recent criticism of the Portuguese star and suggested he is jealous because his career is over.

    Rooney, who played alongside the five-time Ballon d’Or winner for five seasons at Old Trafford, had slated Ronaldo for his refusal to come on as a substitute against Tottenham last month.

    With the Red Devils two goals ahead, the 37-year-old stormed down the tunnel before full-time and was subsequently axed by manager Erik ten Hag, made to train with the youth team and fined two weeks’ wages.

    Rooney felt the punishment was entirely vindicated, describing Ronaldo’s conduct as ‘unacceptable’, while he also claimed United were a better team without the Portuguese forward.

    Ronaldo gave an explosive interview on Sunday night in which he slammed Ten Hag over the incident, claiming he would ‘never respect’ the Dutchman, while he has also taken aim at Rooney over his remarks.

    Speaking to Piers Morgan Uncensored, Ronaldo said: ‘I don’t know why he criticises me so badly… probably because he finished his career and I’m still playing at a high level.

    ‘I’m not going to say that I’m looking better than him. Which is true…’

    Cristiano Ronaldo hits back at old Manchester United team-mate Wayne Rooney
    Ronaldo has suggested Rooney is envious of his longevity (Picture: Getty)

    Rooney had not been entirely negative about Ronaldo and felt he could still be an asset for United if he ‘got his head down’ – though Sunday’s bombshell interview means he has not listened to that advice.

    Asked about Ronaldo’s behaviour, and whether United are a better team with him in the side, Rooney told talkSPORT on Friday: ‘No, I don’t think so.

    ‘I think the career he’s had, him and Lionel Messi are probably the two best players of all time – and you can go either way with that [which one of them is the greatest], whichever way you decide.

    ‘But I just think the things he’s done from the start of the season really are not acceptable for Manchester United.

    ‘Obviously I’ve seen Roy Keane defend him. Roy wouldn’t have accepted that. Roy wouldn’t have accepted that at all.

    ‘So it’s a distraction that Manchester United don’t need at the minute, they’re trying to rebuild.

    ‘And for Cristiano, just put your head down and work and be ready to play when the manager needs you.

    ‘If he does that, I think he’ll be an asset. If he doesn’t, I think it will become an unwanted distraction.’

    MORE : ‘Betrayed’ Cristiano Ronaldo slams Erik ten Hag and finally reveals why he missed Manchester United pre-season

    MORE : Manchester United legend Wayne Rooney digs out Roy Keane over Cristiano Ronaldo defence

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