Sources have told ESPN that Ronaldo was keen to leave Old Trafford this summer because of a desire to play in the Champions League, and he had been linked with a host of clubs including Chelsea, Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid and Napoli.
Ronaldo, who came on in the 68th minute of United’s 1-0 win over Leicester City on deadline day, has one year left on his contract with the option to extend for another year.
Following the win over the Foxes, manager Erik ten Hag said: “As we said [he has stayed]. It is really early in the season. We have a squad, more than 11 starting players and that is what you see now. Players on the bench can play in two to three weeks.”
The news did not come as much of a surprise as Ten had been adamant all along that the former Real Madrid star would remain with the club despite their lack of Champions League football. On Wednesday, Ten Hag told a news conference: “We are happy with him, he’s happy to be here and we want to make the season a success together.
“We are all on one page. You can see in training that it is clear that he has the capabilities. He will fit in because…. I don’t have to explain because he’s a great player. He will fit in every system or every style.”
Ronaldo missed United’s summer tour of Thailand and Australia because of a “family issue” and returned to training two weeks before the start of the new season.
Ronaldo has had a tough start to the season. He was named on the bench for United’s season-opening defeat to Brighton & Hove Albion and started in the 4-0 defeat to Brentford a week later, but was dropped for back-to-back wins over Liverpool and Southampton.
Ronaldo, who re-joined United from Juventus last summer, was the club’s top scorer last season with 24 goals — 18 of which came in the Premier League.
He is set to captain Portugal at the World Cup, which kicks off in Qatar in November.