Cristiano Ronaldo was reportedly absent from Manchester United training when the full squad gathered for pre-season on Monday.
The Portugal striker’s future at Old Trafford was thrown into doubt over the weekend after he requested to be allowed to leave (opens in new tab) if a Champions League club makes him an offer.
Ronaldo was due back in training on Monday, but Sky Sports News (opens in new tab) reports that he was absent due to family reasons.
United have accepted the explanation, as Erik ten Hag gets to work with the rest of his players ahead of heading on tour to Thailand and Australia at the end of the week.
Many of United’s players returned to training last week, but those who were involved in international fixtures last month were given extra time off.
Although the 37-year-old has made his feelings clear about his future, the Red Devils are resistant to a sale and remain determined to keep their star man in place for the final year of his contract.
But Ronaldo wants to be playing Champions League football next season, something United can’t offer him following their sixth-place Premier League finish in 2021/22.
Reports on Monday said that Ronaldo will hold urgent talks with Ten Hag this week about his future (opens in new tab), amid interest from several clubs.
Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Napoli have been linked, while a return to Portugal with Sporting CP or Porto was also mooted.
More Manchester United stories
Frenkie de Jong has been United's top target this summer and the Red Devils are close to agreeing a deal - although they remain willing to walk away if the price isn't right (opens in new tab) and Harry Maguire even came up in talks at one point. (opens in new tab)
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Alasdair Mackenzie is a freelance journalist based in Rome, and a FourFourTwo contributor since 2015. When not pulling on the FFT shirt, he can be found at Reuters, The Times and the i. An Italophile since growing up on a diet of Football Italia on Channel 4, he now counts himself among thousands of fans sharing a passion for Ross County and Lazio.
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