Roy Keane: Cristiano Ronaldo exit ‘good’ for Manchester United

Roy Keane has said that Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure has helped Erik ten Hag bring back Manchester United’s “feel-good factor.”

The Manchester United legend worked for Sky Sports to cover the Red Devils’ 2-0 win over Nottingham Forest in their League Cup semi-final. Ten Hag’s team advanced to the final with a 5-0 win aggregate. Since both sides ended Ronaldo’s contract in November, United has been on a roll, winning 12 straight home games. At the end of his second time at Old Trafford, Keane was a fierce defender of Ronaldo. However, he has admitted that Ronaldo’s departure helped Ten Hag make significant changes.

The former United player told Sky Sports, “I think that’s helped (Ronaldo’s departure) the manager and the club. That whole Ronaldo situation, he obviously wasn’t going to sit on the bench and be happy with it. They’ve now dealt with it and now it’s now hanging over the club anymore.”

Even though Keane agrees that United are better off without Ronaldo, who is now playing for Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia, he thinks Ten Hag’s summer clean-up was even more critical. Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard, and Edinson Cavani all left as free agents, and the former United defender is glad they are no longer dragging down the rest of the team.

He also said, “The other five or six lads that left, [Edinson] Cavani, another one. Those subs and fringe players have to come on and be ready, whereas the fringe players last year just thought they were energy-sappers. Those fringe players were coming off the bench, and when they were coming on, they weren’t bringing anything because they felt they should have been starting.

“There definitely feels around the club a new energy, the new manager has put a few markers down after a bad to start to the season, and that momentum and that feel good factor is back at the club.”

The Red Devils will play again on Saturday against Crystal Palace in the Premier League. Ronaldo will try to score for Al-Nassr in the Saudi Pro League when they go to Al Fateh.

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