EPL

Beckham hopes Ronaldo stays as Man Utd seek necessary change under Ten Hag

By Sports Desk May 08, 2022

Manchester United great David Beckham acknowledged change is required at Old Trafford, but hopes Cristiano Ronaldo will remain part of the Red Devils' future plans.

Ralf Rangnick's United delivered an abject showing in a 4-0 loss at Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday, meaning the Red Devils have conceded more goals (56) than in any previous Premier League campaign.

The result represented a new low in a dire season for United, who will also set their lowest-ever Premier League points tally, sitting on 58 – six fewer than their 2013-14 mark with only one game to play.

Ajax coach Erik ten Hag will replace Rangnick at the end of the season, but the Dutchman will be tasked with a sizeable rebuilding job, with numerous players out of contract and several signings required.

Paul Pogba is reportedly a target for neighbours Manchester City when his contract expires in June, while the future of Ronaldo remains under scrutiny as debates continue around the impact of the Portugal forward.

Ronaldo has scored nine of United's last 13 league goals across 11 matches, taking his tally to a club-leading 18 in the Premier League this campaign.

However, questions persist as to the influence the former Real Madrid man has on United's pressing. Nevertheless, Beckham wants Ronaldo to feature as an integral part of Ten Hag's plans next term.

"Obviously Cristiano is one of the best players over the last 15 years, with Leo [Messi]," Beckham told Sky Sports while attending the Miami Grand Prix.

"To see him stay on, hopefully at United, is important for the fans. It's important to him – we all know how much Man United means to him. He's still doing what he does best, scoring goals. That's what Cristiano does.

"To be doing what he's doing at his age is really incredible, so hopefully it continues for another year or two."

Beckham, who won six Premier League titles and a Champions League at United, also knows significant change is required to transform his former side into a competitive force again.

"I think there are changes to be made and changes that are happening, we've seen that," Beckham said.

"It's been a tough end to the season. But it is the end of the season, I'm sure a lot of the fans are thankful of that because it's been a tough one – full of ups and downs.

"The players have done what they can do best, so has the manager. I turned up at the stadium a few months back and every seat was filled so the fans still believe, they support, they turn up for the team.

"It's what United fans do. There's not many teams to have gone through what they've gone through in the last few years and still be filling out their stadium. There will be changes."

Beckham's former team-mate Peter Schmeichel, who made 292 league appearances for United and was a part of the famous treble-winning 1999 side, believes Ten Hag's arrival offers the Red Devils the perfect opportunity to change.

"It's not nice to watch," Schmeichel said before the Formula One event. "It's difficult to understand but also to put a finger on exactly what is wrong.

"We've been struggling since Alex [Ferguson] left the club. We've been spending a lot of money and we've got somewhere, but not far enough.

"With Erik ten Hag coming in now, it is an opportunity for change and I think this is what we want – maybe modernise the club a bit, restructure the club. That is what I'm looking forward to."

Related items

  • 'One of the world's best centre forwards' – Voller hails Patrik Schick as Bundesliga hot shot lands long-term deal 'One of the world's best centre forwards' – Voller hails Patrik Schick as Bundesliga hot shot lands long-term deal

    Bayer Leverkusen have secured the future of their coveted striker Patrik Schick by signing up the prolific Czech for the next five years.

    Schick was joint-top goalscorer alongside Cristiano Ronaldo at last year's delayed Euro 2020 tournament, hitting five goals.

    He carried that form into the 2021-22 Bundesliga campaign, tallying 24 goals in 27 league games as Leverkusen finished third to earn a Champions League place.

    Only Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski scored more in the German top flight, and Schick had been linked with a host of clubs, including Premier League outfits Arsenal and Newcastle United.

    He was prepared to forgo the possibility of such a switch as he extended a previous contract that ran to 2025 with the new deal that takes him through to the end of the 2026-27 season.

    "I just feel good here," said 26-year-old Schick. "It's a lot of fun with these guys. Qualifying for the Champions League is a good next step. 

    "A lot is possible here, which is exactly why I extended my contract at Bayer 04."

    Leverkusen's departing sporting director Rudi Voller left a parting gift by playing a significant part in the negotiations, with the 1990 World Cup winner saying: "Renewing with such a player is an expression of our ambitions and a clear sign that things will continue at the top level at Bayer Leverkusen even after my departure.

    "For me, Patrik Schick is currently one of the world's best centre forwards. I'm looking forward to seeing him in the Werkself shirt in the years to come."

    Voller is vacating his position as former Leverkusen midfielder Simon Rolfes steps up to inherit the role.

    Rolfes said: "There are only a few centre forwards of his stature internationally. Added to Patrik's exceptional sporting qualities as a full-fledged striker are the skills of a leader."

    Schick came to international prominence thanks to his sensational long-range strike for the Czech Republic against Scotland, which was voted Euro 2020's goal of the tournament.

    He showed brilliant vision to shoot from just inside the Scotland half, with the goal measured at 49.7 yards, making it the furthest distance from which a goal has been scored at the European Championship since such data was first recorded in 1980.

  • Chelsea takeover poised to go through as Portugal approves sale of Premier League giants by Abramovich Chelsea takeover poised to go through as Portugal approves sale of Premier League giants by Abramovich

    Chelsea moved a significant step closer to confirming new owners after the Portuguese government approved the sale of the club.

    Such a deal required the green light from authorities in Portugal given that Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, Chelsea's owner since 2003, also holds Portuguese citizenship.

    The clearance was confirmed a day after the UK government said it was satisfied "the sale will not benefit Roman Abramovich".

    Chelsea agreed to terms for the sale of the club to an ownership group led by Todd Boehly, Clearlake Capital, Mark Walter and Hansjorg Wyss for £4.25billion earlier in May. That deal was passed by the Premier League on Tuesday, pending governmental approval.

    The UK government sanctioned Chelsea owner Abramovich due to his links to Russia's president Vladimir Putin following the invasion of Ukraine.

    The Chelsea takeover promises investment of £1.75billion into the club, while proceeds of the sale are expected to be donated to victims in Ukraine.

    Portugal's government said in a statement on Thursday morning that a decision had been reached in talks held the previous evening.

    "Portugal gave authorisation, this Wednesday night, to the sale of Chelsea football club," the statement said.

    "The two competent national authorities – the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Finance – gave the green light to the request received from Roman Abramovich for a humanitarian waiver, allowing the English club to be transacted.

    "The Portuguese authorisation stems from the guarantee given by the British authorities that the proceeds from the sale will be used for humanitarian purposes, not directly or indirectly benefiting the owner of the club, who is on the European Union sanctions list. The national position has the agreement of the European Commission."

  • Ten Hag to take on Simeone as Man Utd reveal Atletico Madrid clash Ten Hag to take on Simeone as Man Utd reveal Atletico Madrid clash

    Erik ten Hag will have an early chance to test his Manchester United team against European heavyweights after a clash with Atletico Madrid was revealed.

    On the weekend before the Premier League season begins, Ten Hag's United will tackle Atletico at Oslo's Ullevaal Stadium.

    The July 30 fixture sees United take on the team that knocked them out of the Champions League at the last-16 stage this season.

    Ralf Rangnick oversaw a 1-1 draw in Madrid followed by a 1-0 defeat at Old Trafford, but the interim boss has stepped aside after former Ajax head coach Ten Hag was named manager on a three-year contract.

    United football director John Murtough, who alongside Ten Hag is set to lead an overhaul of the club's playing staff during the close season, said the Atletico game would be a significant fixture.

    "Pre-season is such an important part of the squad's preparations for the season ahead," Murtough said.

    "Our players and coaching staff will be relishing the opportunity to play against such a high-calibre opponent in Atletico Madrid, as well as the chance to perform in front of a full stadium of passionate Norwegian fans."

    United trailed home a dismal sixth in the 2021-22 Premier League, losing their last six away games, finishing with their fewest points since 1989-90, and ending the campaign with a goal difference of zero.

    Atletico, a year on from winning the LaLiga title, finished third in the Spanish top flight as Real Madrid took top spot and Barcelona edged into second position.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.