Home Sports Cristiano Ronaldo 'vetoed' Antonio Conte as a potential Manchester United manager

Cristiano Ronaldo 'vetoed' Antonio Conte as a potential Manchester United manager

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Cristiano Ronaldo ‘vetoed’ Antonio Conte as a potential Manchester United manager before he took charge of Tottenham… and Old Trafford chiefs ‘used baseless links with Zinedine Zidane to keep superstar happy’

  • Antonio Conte was on Manchester United’s managerial radar earlier this season 
  • Old Trafford chiefs were looking for a new boss after axing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer 
  • But as far back as October, Cristiano Ronaldo was asked for an opinion on Conte 
  • United are closing in on Erik ten Hag after Ajax coach verbally agreed to a deal

Cristiano Ronaldo vetoed Antonio Conte as a potential Manchester United manager earlier this season, reports say, before the fiery Italian took charge at Tottenham. 

Old Trafford chiefs set out on the hunt for a new boss after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was dismissed in November, with United having endured a nightmare slump under the club legend, and they would soon hire Ralf Rangnick until the end of the season.

However, it has since emerged that they asked superstar Ronaldo for his opinion on their dugout uncertainty as far back as October.  

Cristiano Ronaldo vetoed Antonio Conte as a potential Manchester United boss, reports say

Cristiano Ronaldo vetoed Antonio Conte as a potential Manchester United boss, reports say

Conte was on United's radar earlier this season, but later went on to take charge at Tottenham

Conte was on United’s radar earlier this season, but later went on to take charge at Tottenham

He had reservations over Conte, which were then fed back to the board, the Manchester Evening News claim. 

The talisman’s future at the club is clouded in doubt currently due to the side’s dismal collapse across every competition this campaign, although it is thought he has stepped up on several occasions in an attempt to keep the squad unified. 

Indeed, Ronaldo was an influential voice in the fallout from United’s 5-0 drubbing at the hands of fierce rivals Liverpool on October 24, although he did not hide his ‘dissatisfaction’ with Solskjaer, who came under severe pressure after the defeat. 

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was axed in November, leaving the club searching for a new coach

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was axed in November, leaving the club searching for a new coach

The same outlet has gone on to add that Jorge Mendes, the 37-year-old’s agent, asked for reassurance from former Red Devils CEO Ed Woodward that Solskjaer would be axed after their 4-1 loss at Watford on November 20.

At the time, it was widely reported that the influential Mendes also recommended Sevilla boss Julen Lopetegui to United as a potential successor.

The MEN say that any claims linking United to Zinedine Zidane, who coached Ronaldo at Real Madrid, were simply a ploy to appease their unsettled superstar. 

Conte, meanwhile, was open to taking up the job at United – but, having remained out of employment until November, he was handed the Spurs reins instead. 

It is alleged that any links with Zinedine Zidane were done to appease the unsettled Ronaldo

It is alleged that any links with Zinedine Zidane were done to appease the unsettled Ronaldo

Ronaldo is tied down at United for one more season, but the future of his second spell at the club appears likely to hinge on the appointment of the club’s next coach.

Last night, Erik ten Hag edged closer to becoming Solskjaer’s permanent replacement, having verbally agreed to the framework of a deal on Tuesday.

United, as revealed by Sportsmail, presented the current Ajax manager with a three-year contract, which also includes the option for a fourth year. 

Erik ten Hag is closing in on becoming United's next boss after verbally agreeing to a deal

Erik ten Hag is closing in on becoming United’s next boss after verbally agreeing to a deal

In the coming days, the United hierarchy will meet with their Ajax counterparts to formalise a release agreement, including a compensation deal of around £1.7million.

Ten Hag’s No 2 at Ajax, Mitchell van der Gaag, is ready to follow the 52-year-old to the Premier League, it is understood. 

Paris Saint-Germain’s Mauricio Pochettino, Spain boss Luis Enrique and Lopetegui were all considered, but the decision was made to push on with Ten Hag. 

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