13 Aug, 2022 (Sat)

Cristiano Ronaldo may regret his decision to return to Manchester United, former Netherlands and Milan legend Ruud Gullit has accused the club of "living in the past".

Ronaldo returned to United from Juventus in 2021 and scored 24 goals in 38 appearances across all competitions for the Red Devils.

However, despite winning the Ballon d'Or 5 times, United did not win a single trophy and were eliminated from the Champions League round of 16 by Atletico Madrid and finished sixth in the Premier League.

Ronaldo has expressed his desire to leave Old Trafford due to the lack of Champions League qualification, but United have shown no signs of allowing the Portugal international to move.

Speaking to Laureus, the 37-year-old believed he was keen to be at his best at the World Cup in Qatar later this year, but said he may be regretting his decision to return to United.

 "Ronaldo in Portugal, can he still do it... I think he's eager to show the world how good he is," Gullit said. "That's how I feel. This guy has incredible mental strength.

"He won't say it, but I think he regrets coming back to Manchester United because of the team there. I hope he gets better, so I want to show everyone who criticizes him. It's worth it. I think he's on a mission.

Gullit also provided advice to Erik ten Hag. His fellow Dutchman took over as United manager at the end of last season and his new side did not get off to the best start as they lost 2-1 at home to Brighton and Hove Albion in their last Premier League opener. A week.

"Ten Hag, I think he's a good coach, but it's difficult for you to come to England with a Dutch mentality," he said. "You have to adapt yourself, you have to understand that you don't just play football and win. You have to have power. You have to have power, you have to have technique. You have to have stamina and the right mentality."

"That's why we love the Premier League. There are no easy games, you have to understand that."

Gullis, who managed Chelsea and Newcastle United, also accused United of "living in the past" in the Premier League, adding: "I think Manchester United have a lot of problems.

"I think they live too much in the past," he said. "They talk a lot about the '90s team. That's the past.

"Now (United) want to see teams that want to play football, but it's too late. [Manchester City manager] Pep Guardiola did it, [Liverpool manager Jurgen] Klopp did it, [Chelsea manager Thomas] Tuchel did it. United have had Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho in the past. But there is a new age.

 “I think they sacked Mourinho in 2018 too early. Because I think he still won trophies when he was with such bad players.

"Nowadays players want to go to different teams. They want to go to Liverpool. They want to go to Manchester City. They want to go to Chelsea. [United] is no longer the main team in England; They are the same as (Sir Alex) Ferguson.

“So you have to change your mentality a little bit, it takes some time.

"Also, they have five ex-players who talk about Manchester United every day. It's hard and the only way to succeed is if you don't, you have to look at the newspapers every day. The first five or six articles about Manchester United are hard every day."

Gullit, a former Milan striker who worked with Laureus to help refugee programs in Eastern Europe following the impact of Russia's invasion of Ukraine He took time to praise the work of Ukraine international and Laureus ambassador Andriy Shevchenko.

"It is incredibly difficult for me to imagine what Andriy Shevchenko and his family have gone through in the last six months. I am happy to see Andriy visiting a refugee project in Warsaw helping Ukrainians rebuild away from the horrors of war," he said.

"Nelson Mandela, who I have great respect for, spoke at the first Laureus Awards dedicated to the Ballon d'Or in 1987 and said, 'Sport can create hope where there was once despair.'

"Watching Andriy's visit to Laureus Sport for Good in Warsaw reminded me of Mandela's words, but the incredible power sport can change lives. Andriy and Laureus are making a difference.