Solskjaer doubts Ronaldo would’ve picked City


Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says there was no chance Cristiano Ronaldo would sign for Manchester City even before Manchester United swooped in to snatch his signature.

City expressed an interest in Ronaldo as they searched for a striker during the final days of the transfer window. But Solskjaer insists the 36-year-old, who could make his second United against Newcastle on Saturday, was never destined for the Etihad Stadium.

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“I don’t think there was any prospect of that,” said Solskjaer, when asked how close Ronaldo had come to joining City. Ronaldo is set to feature against Newcastle at Old Trafford, although Solskjaer has refused to confirm whether the Portuguese forward will start.

He is set to compete with compatriot Bruno Fernandes for penalty responsibilities but Solskjaer says the final decision about who takes spot kicks will be down to him.

“I knew that question was going to come and of course I’ve had a chat with the two of them,” said Solskjaer. “We’ve got two players there that I’d trust with my life to put a penalty away and that’s a great position got be in.

“It’s going be my decision what’ll happen. The two of them will keep on doing what they do when they’re asked to take the penalties.

“I’ve had this conversation, of course, and they know my position on it. They know that I decide who is going to shoot the penalty if we get one. That’s not going to cause an issue.”

Solskjaer rejected the suggestion that Ronaldo’s arrival heaps more pressure on the Norwegian to win the title but he did issue a warning to his players that the former Real Madrid and Juventus striker will raise standards in the dressing room.

“When you have players like this there is no hiding place because you’ll be told,” said Solskjaer. “If you don’t do the right thing you’ll be told. When I walked into the dressing room here when I played, and if Roy Keane saw me dip out of a tackle or not make the run, you were told.

“I ended up being one of them that told players I played with. That’s how it should be in Man United. You should have some experienced leaders there that can put the demands down.”

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