CRISTIANO RONALDO has been AXED by Manchester United after having his £500,000-a-week contract ripped up.
The Portugal forward, 37, blasted the club in his explosive interview with Piers Morgan.
AFPCristiano Ronaldo has been axed by Manchester United with his contract terminated[/caption]
Ronaldo’s interview with Piers Morgan kickstarted his Old Trafford exitTalkTV
And as SunSport revealed last week, the Red Devils have decided to terminate his contract with immediate effect.
The news was announced at 5.30pm as United released a blunt statement for the club icon.
The Old Trafford club – who will NOT give their iconic No7 a pay-off to save themselves £11.5million – said: “Cristiano Ronaldo is to leave Manchester United by mutual agreement, with immediate effect.
“The club thanks him for his immense contribution across two spells at Old Trafford, scoring 145 goals in 346 appearances, and wishes him and his family well for the future.
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“Everyone at Manchester United remains focused on continuing the team’s progress under Erik ten Hag and working together to deliver success on the pitch.”
The news comes less than 48 hours before Ronaldo kicks off his fifth World Cup campaign with Portugal.
The Euro 2016 champions face Ghana in Doha on Thursday afternoon.
And captain Ronaldo will start the game unemployed as a free agent.
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Ronaldo hit back with a short statement of his own shortly after the confirmation of his exit.
He said: “Following talks with Manchester United, we’ve mutually agreed to end our contract.
“I love Manchester United and I love the fans, that will never ever change.
“It feels like the right time to seek a new challenge. I wish Man Utd all the best.”
Ronaldo had played a bit-part role under Ten Hag this season with just four Premier League starts and one goal in ten appearances.
The former Real Madrid and Juventus superstar launched a scathing attack on Manchester United in his 90-minute sit-down chat with Piers.
In there, he claimed he did not have respect for manager Ten Hag, the club betrayed him and they did not believe him regarding his baby daughter’s ill health over the summer.
When snippets of the bombshell interview were released by The Sun hours after the 2-1 win at Fulham, United said they would wait for the full facts before making a decision.
It is understood they sought legal advice and clearly feel they have grounds to terminate the big-money contract seven months early.
Morgan retweeted the United tweet and simply added: “The end.”
Fans on Twitter were convinced Ronaldo took one final swipe at United with his new watch design that appears to feature his headed goal scored AGAINST the Red Devils during his time with Real.
Bookmakers Betfair have made Ronaldo’s boyhood club Sporting Lisbon the favourites to clinch his signature on a free transfer in January.
Todd Boehly’s Chelsea are second favourites ahead of an MLS side, Bayern Munich, PSG and Napoli.
Ronaldo’s former team-mate Rio Ferdinand was live on BBC covering Poland’s 0-0 draw with Mexico when the Ronaldo news broke this evening.
The ex-defender said: “Cristiano obviously did that interview with the mindset that he wasn’t happy and wanted to get out of the club.
“He made that very clear.
“I think Erik ten Hag got what he wanted in this situation as well. Both parties are happy and we can move on.
“The next chapter for Cristiano? It depends what his motivation is.
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“Play in the Champions League? Money? To continue playing somewhere with a nice climate?
“We’ll find out in due course I’m sure.”
Ronaldo and partner Georgina Rodriguez have endured a difficult time away from the pitchInstagram / @georginagio
AFPRonaldo slammed the club including Erik ten Hag in the interview[/caption]
ReutersRonaldo had started just four games in the Premier League this season and scored once[/caption]