Manchester United return to action this Sunday (October 2) with a blockbuster clash against Manchester City at Old Trafford in the Premier League. New manager Erik ten Hag’s side are fifth in the league, five points behind their second-placed rivals, having played a game less.
Meanwhile, former Red Devils striker Federico Macheda has said that Cristiano Ronaldo is from a different world. Elsewhere, former Aston Villa striker Gabriel Agbonlahor reckons David de Gea doesn’t deserve an extension at Old Trafford.
On that note, here's a look at the key Manchester United transfer stories as on September 29, 2022:
Cristiano Ronaldo from a different world, says Federico Macheda
Federico Macheda has paid a special tribute to Cristiano Ronaldo. The Italian forward shared the dressing room with the Portuguese during their time together at Manchester United. Macheda got a first-hand view of Ronaldo's desire for excellence at Old Trafford.
Speaking to the Vive with Five Podcast, as relayed by Stretty News, Macheda said that Ronaldo set an example at the club.
“I would say that Ronaldo was the one (player at United) who was out of a different world. This is the kind of player you have to look into because as I have said before about myself of not wanting more, this guy had everything, won everything and still wanted more. I remember him going from the gym after training to swimming for one hour,” said Macheda.
“I was there in the jacuzzi with other players after training, which is normal, and he was just swimming for one hour – up and down, up and down. Back then, I should have had this view, this mentality to think: ‘I should do the same probably, look at this guy’. If I was to go back then, I would look into this guy as an example and follow every little step that he was making because he was something unbelievable.”
Ronaldo is yet to score in the Premier League this season after six appearances.
David de Gea doesn't deserve extension at Manchester United, says Gabriel Agbonlahor
Gabriel Agbonlahor has urged Manchester United not to hand David de Gea an extension. The Spanish goalkeeper has blown hot and cold recently and is in the final year of his deal. The Red Devils have an option for an additional year.
Speaking to Football Insider, Agbonlahor said that the Old Trafford outfit should let De Gea go and target someone younger.
“I don’t think he deserves that contract. I would move on, to be honest. He’ll have a few good games, but he’ll make errors. The wages they’re talking about, £300,000-a-week - he doesn’t deserve that. I would move on and look at a younger option instead,” said Agbonlahor.
De Gea has started every game for Manchester United this season.
Noel Whelan backs Casemiro to start against Manchester City
Former Leeds United striker Noel Whelan has backed Casemiro to start against Manchester City. The Brazilian joined Manchester United from Real Madrid this summer but is yet to cement a place in the starting XI.
Speaking to Football Insider, Whelan said that the Red Devils will be wary of pushing Casemiro into a fiercely competitive game.
“Coming into a Manchester derby where we know the stakes are high, and there’s a lot of pressure and emotions that come along with that derby as well. Right now, Man United and Erik ten Hag are probably thinking there’s two ways to look at it,” said Whelan.
“Yes, he’s played in massive games against Barcelona and Atletico Madrid, and he can handle these occasions. He seems to have a level head, but sometimes these sorts of games can do crazy things to you if you’re new to a football club, and you’re out there to try and impress the fans.”
However, Whelan added that the time is ripe for Casemiro to justify his price tag.
“When you’re playing against a quality side, and you’ve spent so much money on a player to come in and do a job and strengthen the side, then you’ve got to realise there’s no wrong time or right time to throw him in. It would be a really good match up to see him out there. I think that’s what Man United fans probably want to see out there as well.”
Casemiro has appeared five times for Manchester United this season. The Brazil midfielder moved to Old Trafford in a £70 million deal this summer.