Bruno Fernandes has said he respects Cristiano Ronaldo’s decision to cut ties with Manchester United.
It was announced on Tuesday that Ronaldo, 37, had left United by mutual consent following his explosive interview with Piers Morgan.
Fernandes, who is expected to line up alongside Ronaldo when Portugal open their World Cup campaign against Ghana on Thursday, has said it was privilege to play alongside the now-free agent at club level.
Speaking on Wednesday, Fernandes said: “I don’t feel uncomfortable. I don’t have to pick a side. It was a privilege to play in the national team with Ronaldo and at the club it was a dream come true and I have always said that.
“Cristiano has always been an inspiration for me. It was a dream but we know nothing lasts forever. And now Cristiano took a decision for his life and his career and we have to respect every decision.”
Ronaldo has left Old Trafford without receiving a pay-off.
A statement from United on Tuesday read: “Cristiano Ronaldo is to leave Manchester United by mutual agreement, with immediate effect.
“The club thanks him for his immense contribution across two spells at Old Trafford, scoring 145 goals in 346 appearances, and wishes him and his family well for the future.”
Ronaldo conducted a highly-critical interview prior to the World Cup in which he accused his employers of betrayal and took swipes at head coach Erik ten Hag, as well as the club’s hierarchy.
His position at United was seen as untenable which led to a quick resolution.
Ronaldo’s departure was confirmed just hours before it was announced the Glazer family had instructed banks to handle the sale of the club.
The Glazers, who took over Manchester United in 2005, on Tuesday announced plans to identify “strategic alternatives” that could lead to a potential sale of the club.
A statement said the process will consider a number of options “including new investment into the club, a sale, or other transactions involving the company”.
Why Cristiano Ronaldo’s exit means Manchester United can plan for the future
(Photo: Getty Images)