Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag said he slept well after taking the big decision of dropping Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo in the game against Liverpool early on in the season at Old Trafford which the hosts won 2-1. That the first match that was lit, which later saw Ronaldo burning bridges with the club where he became a superstar.
When asked about the critical decision of dropping Ronaldo from the starting XI, the manager said: “I do consider big decisions like that, definitely,” he said. “I have to look at the impact they make, not only in the short term but also for the longer term. You always have to think strategically as a manager and face the consequences. I am aware of it but that is my job and my responsibility,” he added.
When asked if he had been worried how the Ronaldo decision would play out with the club supporters who love the star, he said: “I had reasons to choose that team against Liverpool. They were obvious. And I knew the reaction if it had been a negative outcome, which is always possible in football.
“But I am not worrying. I sleep well also on those nights. I have to take decisions in respect of the club and the team. I have to stand by those decisions,” ten Hag said speaking in the pre-match press conference ahead of the return fixture at Anfield.
Since the first encounter between these two sides in August the fortunes of both sides have changed a lot. The game marked the beginning of the end of Ronaldo at Old Trafford as he left the club to go to Saudi Arabia to represent Al Nassr. Liverpool, on the other hand, has been struggling to pick up points in the league and is sixth in the table.
Ahead of the high-octane clash, Manchester United, who has an outside chance of winning the league, will be looking to stay in the title race by getting a positive result in the game. On the contrary, Liverpool is six points behind Tottenham for the fourth Champions League spot and winning three points against their arch-rivals might be just the boost of confidence the side needs.