Rio Ferdinand has claimed that some Manchester United players cannot handle the pressure of playing alongside superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.
Ronaldo, 37, started his first game of the season in a 4-0 defeat to Brentford, with the Bees scoring all of their goals in the first 35 minutes.
And former United defender Ferdinand believes Ronaldo’s aura is a drag on some of his teammates.
Ferdinand said to vibe with five Podcast: “I think Cristiano is probably a stature, he’s not a speaker and someone who’s going to sit at a table and talk to people, but he’s more than that: ‘You’ll watch me and you’ll learn.
“And the aura he has and being one of the best players ever, I think, can be a burden to some of these players and they aren’t able to handle the pressure that comes from someone like him.
“I don’t know how you are [pundits] Keep picking Ronaldo as the problem.
“There are many other players in this team who do less and contribute less. You keep calling him [out] Because it’s the big name.”
Ronaldo came under fire at the weekend after he failed to applaud the traveling United fans and instead stormed into the tunnel without shaking Eric ten Hag’s hand.
CR7 also reprimanded David de Gea for his mistakes during the Bee match and showed clear signs of frustration.
That sparked speculation that United were considering terminating Ronaldo’s contract if his situation did not improve, which the club has since denied.
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Ferdinand also defended Erik ten Hag after the Brentford defeat and revealed he “feels sorry” for the Dutchman.
He added, “I don’t feel sorry for the players, I feel sorry for Tin Hag.
“He was presented under false pretenses. He is coming, expecting new deals.
“Maybe he was just sitting there thinking, ‘I sold a doll here. I didn’t know I was coming to this.'”