Cristiano Ronaldo should have started for Manchester United against Chelsea, insists former club coach René Meulensteen.
And he believes that acting manager Ralf Rangnick’s priority should be to serve the striker.
Meulensteen was United’s first-team coach between 2007 and 2013, where he worked under legendary club boss Sir Alex Ferguson.
The club won three league titles while the Dutchman was at the club, as well as a Champions League.
Having worked with Ronaldo during his time at Old Trafford, he says he saw “no reason” for him not to start United’s 1-1 draw with Chelsea, insisting he did no need to rest for games as he is a ‘training beast’.
Meulensteen told talkSPORT: “You see how important he has been for United so far. If you take away his goals then I think the situation would look a lot darker.
“I think Michael Carrick in his interview said he had a good conversation with him and Ronaldo was good, but I’m sure Ronaldo wouldn’t have been okay with that because he still wants to play .
“He’s him. He always wants to be important to the team. There’s no reason to let him out, physically.
“I think if you watch yesterday’s game, again, looking back, I wouldn’t have seen any reason for it not to start.”
He added: “Cristiano Ronaldo is a racing car and as long as there is gas in the tank he keeps driving.
“It’s more about managing it outside of these games, because it’s also a training beast.”
Meulensteen also urged new interim United boss Rangnick to forget about pushing and focus more on serving Ronaldo.
He added: “Everyone is now talking about dry cleaning and gegenpressing with the arrival of Rangnick – I don’t know where this discussion is coming from.
“Dry cleaning is not something you just introduce overnight.
“There is a time to squeeze but, more than anything, what I think Manchester United have to come back to is playing football – keeping the ball, keeping the ball rhythmically, holding the ball with authority, opening the ball. ‘opposition.
“There’s no point in squeezing the ball and giving it away right away because that’s what United keep doing. That would be my accent.
“If you have Ronaldo on your team, what does he need? You need services.
“Where does the service come from? Large areas.
“That’s the thing you have to look at – how can they get players in a good position in wide areas to provide that serve to Ronaldo?
“Because the better the service, the more goals he will score. “
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