Erik ten Hag explains why he didn't bring Cristiano Ronaldo on against Manchester City

Erik ten Hag has revealed that he didn’t bring Cristiano Ronaldo on against Manchester City “out of respect” for what the legendary Portuguese has achieved during his career.

The 37-year-old was an unused substitute as Manchester United were beaten 6-3 at the Etihad Stadium.

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With Marcus Rashford back available after recovering from the muscle injury he suffered against Arsenal at the start of last month, Ten Hag restored the England international to the starting line-up for the trip to the Citizens.

The return of United’s number ten meant that Ronaldo dropped down to the bench.

Erik ten Hag explains why he didn’t bring Cristiano Ronaldo on against Manchester City

Having started back-to-back games under the former Ajax manager for the first time, albeit in the Europa League, Ronaldo probably would have fancied his chances of starting against Pep Guardiola’s side.

But the five-time Ballon d’Or winner was once again back on the bench for a Premier League game.

Ronaldo hasn’t started a Premier League game since United’s 4-0 battering at Brentford in Ten Hag’s second game in charge of the club.

What would have been even more difficult for Ronaldo to accept was that it was Anthony Martial who came off the bench when Rashford was replaced.

Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images

The former Monaco man hadn’t featured for the Reds since coming on at half-time in the 2-1 win against Liverpool at the end of August.

United’s number nine scored two goals against City to make the scoreline flattering on United’s behalf.

But Ronaldo must be wondering where his next start will come from.

With Rashford and Martial seemingly ahead of him in the Premier League pecking order, it looks like the former Juventus man’s best chance of featuring under Ten Hag is going to come via the Europa League and domestic cup competitions.

Ten Hag revealed that he didn’t bring on one of the greatest players of all time, who was United’s top scorer last season with 24 goals across all competitions, “out of respect for his big career”.

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Passionate Football fan that completed a NCTJ-accredited Diploma in Multimedia Sports Journalism in 2016.