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Ole Gunnar Solskjær would not rule out that Manchester United players left after Cristiano Ronaldo’s return and said that the Portuguese star “was not signed to sit on the bench”.
The Red Devils announced on Friday that they had agreed a deal with Juventus, allegedly worth £ 12.8 million (€ 15 million), to bring the 36-year-old back to Old Trafford subject to personal terms, a visa and a doctor.
The signing could not be completed in time for United’s Premier League clash with Wolves on Sunday, which was settled by a Mason Greenwood strike in the 80th minute when Solskjær’s men set a new English league record of 28 away games unbeaten.
Now with an international break, Ronaldo’s first chance to appear for the club he left in 2009 will likely be against Newcastle United at Old Trafford on 11 September.
Solskjær, who at Sky Sports confirmed that he intends to deploy Ronaldo more as a center-forward than a winger, hopes the new addition will be ready as soon as possible once the deal is made and he returns from Portugal.
“We have to get all the paperwork done. Hopefully we can get it sorted and announce it 100 percent, ”said Solskjær.
“He’s away with Portugal, I think they have three matches, his last match is on Tuesday, so get him back to Manchester with Bruno [Fernandes] and hopefully he will be with as soon as possible. ”
Ronaldo’s comeback means United are full of attacks and may appear to relieve some players before the transfer window closes.
Amad Diallo had been close to coming to Feyenoord on loan, although an injury reportedly could ruin that move, while Jesse Lingard and Dan James have also been linked with departures.
“Of course, he [Ronaldo] was not signed to sit on the bench, ”said Solskjær. “Of course he will make us a better team.
“There have been a few inquiries to some of our players, and with the signing of Cristiano, we may be giving less playing time to a few.
“Dan is a Man United player at the moment.”
United worked for much of the first hour at Molineux and owed a fantastic double save from David de Gea for refusing Romain Saiss shortly before Greenwood’s winner.
“We got three points, get a clean sheet, on another day they might score one in the first half when Aaron [Wan-Bissaka] saves one from the line, or when David saves the two chances the second half, ”said Solskjær.
“With Mason, he’s a special kid. The boy is unique by quickly hitting the target: right foot, left foot, it does not matter to him.
“We’ve definitely played better, but sometimes you have to earn your luck, and I thought we did.”
Solskjær was delighted with the performance of defender Raphael Varane, who was largely impeccable in the back and even earned an assist on his United debut.
“Top, top performance,” Solskjær said. “This was‘ welcome to the Premier League ’: pace, bustle, tackling, having to defend counter-attacks. He is good in the air, so composed on the ball, and he is so experienced, nothing is due to him, and he was good in the locker room before the game and at halftime.
“I love him. I thought he was showing his class. ”