Cristiano Ronaldo won’t play in Manchester United friendly vs. Atletico Madrid

Superstar Cristiano Ronaldo recently returned to training alongside Manchester United teammates after he skipped the club’s preseason tour of Thailand and Australia for alleged “family reasons.” This comes amid reports he wishes to leave Old Trafford so he can sign for a team that will play in the 2022-23 UEFA Champions League competition. 

It’s unclear if Ronaldo will feature for United in early August, but it’s now known he won’t be available for selection on the final Saturday of this month.

As noted by a Sky Sports News piece, Ronaldo was not included in the United squad for Saturday’s friendly against Atletico Madrid that will take place in Oslo. The 37-year-old and agent Jorge Mendes held talks with United manager Erik ten Hag earlier this week that reportedly did not change the player’s mind about wanting to sign for a Champions League side during the open transfer window. 

Somewhat ironically, Ronaldo was previously linked with United’s upcoming opponents in rumors earlier this month. However, Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo explained during a radio appearance this week that it is “practically impossible” for his club to sign the five-time Ballon d’Or winner due to financial reasons. 

Chelsea, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain and Napoli are also among clubs said to have rejected opportunities to land Ronaldo this summer. 

United open the Premier League season against Brighton & Hove Albion on Aug. 7. Ronaldo’s status for that match is unknown assuming he’ll still be a United player at that time. 

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