Gary Neville has revealed what Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer must do to get the best out of Cristiano Ronaldo.
Cristiano Ronaldo needs a group of hard-working players around him to excel at Manchester United, says Gary Neville.
Despite Ronaldo’s preference to play on the left as an inside forward, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has used him as a No.9. That said, the Portuguese ace has still scored five goals in six games since his return in August.
But while Ronaldo is still firing in the goals, Neville has urged Solskjaer to re-think his system.
“Cristiano Ronaldo needs players who are going to work really hard defensively. That was the same in 2008, by the way,” said the former Red Devils full-back on his ‘Gary Neville Podcast’.
“In 2008 Park Ji-sung, Darren Fletcher, Owen Hargreaves, Wayne Rooney, and Carlos Tevez all worked like trojans to make up for Cristiano in terms of what he was doing.
“We went to Barcelona in 2008 in the [Champions League] semi-final. The manager sticks Ronaldo up top, he puts Rooney up the wing with Park and gets them to double up and work really hard in a 4-4-2, with Tevez dropping in on [Sergio] Busquets.
“You got to put players around Ronaldo that are going to forgive the fact he isn’t going to press from the front, run hard, or close people down. You’re almost carrying the player when you’re out of possession.
“But we were 10-12 years ago, but you forgive that because of his greatness and ability to win games.”
Neville added Solskjaer could link Edinson Cavani up with Ronaldo in a two-man attack and use some hard-working players behind them.