Manchester United’s use of Cristiano Ronaldo borders on ‘abuse’, according to former Liverpool player Michael Owen.
The Portuguese star was left on the bench for United’s 1-1 draw against Chelsea on Sunday and he stormed down the tunnel without visiting the away end after the game.
Ronaldo was given less than half an hour against Chelsea and he cut a lonely figure when he did come on, with Michael Carrick selecting three defensive midfielders against the Blues.
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The former Real Madrid forward has scored ten goals in 15 matches for United since returning to Old Trafford and he’s saved the team on a number of occasions, most notably with goals against Villarreal & Atalanta.
But Owen believes the Portugal international is often left to run the team’s attack and says the lack of support he gets is ‘abusive’.
Asked if he’d like to play in United’s team, Owen told Premier League Productions: ‘No you can’t! We were at Old Trafford for the City game the other day and all of a sudden it’s just exactly the same they leave Cristiano Ronaldo up front on his own. That’s almost abuse!
‘Having someone that good in your team and then playing everyone defensively and saying ‘That’s alright we’ll just hope he nicks a goal’ he’ll end up being average.
‘If you leave him and all these good players or just two of them playing and everyone else defending they’ll start putting in bad performances because they’ve got nobody to pass to, they’ve got no options, they’re chipping the ball form 50 yards away. They need other players to come up and help them.
‘It’s almost abusing the good players they’ve got and that’s the last thing you’ve got to do. If anything, expose the rubbish! Find ways of getting world class players in your team, get Pogba, get Fernandes, get Ronaldo, get them as best as you can.
‘If you let a few goals in because Bailly’s not great or Wan-Bissaka or whoever it may be then fine you can replace them but at the minute because they’re nervous and scared they just bulk up with sitting midfielders and more defenders and abuse the great players up front leaving half of them on the bench and one or two to play, they’ve got no chance!