Banished Cristiano Ronaldo got a taste of life on Erik ten Hag’s naughty step as he completed his first day of training alone on Friday.
The Portuguese star, who Sportsmail exclusively revealed refused to come on as a substitute in Wednesday’s 2-0 win over Tottenham, arrived at 8.30am with the Under-21s, before going on to train on his own with coaches. He then promptly drove back out at 1pm.
Ronaldo’s defiance saw him axed and relegated away from the first team and he will play no part in this weekend’s game against Chelsea, instead having to spend his time isolated at Carrington.
In remarkable scenes at Old Trafford on Wednesday night Ronaldo moped his way down the tunnel before the match had ended.
In the 89th minute he picked up his belongings from the dressing room and left Old Trafford before the final whistle.
The public nature of his departure meant Ten Hag and United had no option but to act.
The incident has put their fragile working relationship under intense scrutiny and cast further doubt over Ronaldo’s future, with his first team exile commencing on Friday as the rest of Ten Hag’s squad prepare to face Chelsea.
It is understood the player has shown thinly veiled disdain for Ten Hag and his coaching team, to the extent of blatantly ignoring one senior staff figure.
Ronaldo has been openly critical of training and believes United should play in a different way.
‘As I’ve always done throughout my career, I try to live and play respectfully towards my colleagues, my adversaries and my coaches. That hasn’t changed,’ Ronaldo said in a statement on Thursday, in a bid to defend his early exit.
‘I haven’t changed. I’m the same person and the same professional that I’ve been for the last 20 years playing elite football, and respect has always played a very important role in my decision making process.’
There has been an animosity at the training ground that other members of the squad are believed to have picked up on.