Rio Ferdinand claims that Cristiano Ronaldo should have been told to 'sit down' against Young Boys
“If I’m the manager, I’ve got to be honest, I’m telling him to sit down”
Rio Ferdinand has stated that if he was the Manchester United manager, he would have told Cristiano Ronaldo to ‘sit down’ against Young Boys after the Portuguese captain was seen shouting instructions to team-mates whilst stood next to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Ronaldo, who was replaced by Jesse Lingard in the second-half, opened the scoring for the Red Devils on Tuesday night before Young Boys scored twice - including an injury-time winner after a horrific mistake by Lingard - to secure a famous victory.
After being substituted, Ronaldo was keen to stay involved in the tie as he made his way to Solskjaer's technical area to shout instructions to his United teammates - just like he did when Portugal defeated France in the Euro 2016 final.
Despite understanding his former teammates' will to win at all costs, Ferdinand revealed that he should've been told to sit back down on the bench.
“If I’m the manager, I’ve got to be honest, I’m telling him to sit down,” the former Man Utd defender told BT Sport.
“I get it. You know, with Cristiano people go, ‘Oh it’s bravado, it’s for the fans’. He’s just a passionate guy. He wants to win, he’s desperate to win, and he can’t hold it in.
“If that means he has to go up there and stand next to the manager, shouting instructions etc etc, so be it. When it’s someone of his standing and stature in the game how can you argue with it?”
Man Utd managed just two shots on target against Young Boys ❌
It's the fewest they have managed in 138 Champions League matches since the 2003/04 season - the campaign that Cristiano Ronaldo first joined the club 😳#UCL pic.twitter.com/Meoo6j62Nw
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) September 14, 2021
Although the Red Devils had to play over 45 minutes with 10 men - after Aaron Wan-Bissaka saw red for his a tackle in the 35th minute - Ferdinand defended the tactical decisions made by Solskjaer, despite the Norwegian receiving heavy criticism for supposedly inviting pressure onto his side.
“In the 72nd minute, they’re talking about needing a goal. Ole’s not thinking like that," he stated.
“As a manager I understand what he is probably thinking at that time, 1-1, away in Europe, always difficult no matter where you go, in Europe it’s always difficult to go away, on an artificial pitch, we’re down to 10 men, we’ll take a point.
“And that’s what he was thinking. He wasn’t thinking about bringing players on or keeping players on to score goals, it was about seeing the game out. And listen, if he sees that game out, no-one is talking about substitutions.”
Even though his former side ended up conceding late and losing the game, Ferdinand was still keen to back the United manager, who has now lost seven of his 11 Champions League fixtures as Man Utd manager.
“It’s the fact it wasn’t based on the team shape or the team performance, it was based on a single person’s error of judgement. That’s the difference," said the 42-year-old.
“If it was a tactical situation, where you go, ‘That’s the reason they’ve lost today, because tactically they got that wrong’. They didn’t play well today, when they had 11 men or 10 men, but I wouldn’t say the substitutions were the reasons they didn’t get a draw.”
Man Utd will have chance to put things right on Sunday when they travel to the London Stadium to face former manager David Moyes' West Ham side.
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