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The Manager's Column

Sir Alex Ferguson writes openly in every issue of United Review, the club's match programme.

Registered users of ManUtd.com can read extracts here.
24/09/2008 10:33, Report by Sir Alex Ferguson

Ron must leave like Eric

The manager's column in the Middlesbrough match programme included these extracts...

Graeme Souness was right when he said on TV recently that just as Italians playing abroad all dream of playing one day for Juventus or the Milan clubs, so southern Europeans want at some point to play for Real Madrid or Barcelona.

So I understood what was going on in Cristiano Ronaldo's mind when he declared that he wanted to join Real, but once we had talked he accepted that it was a move for the future.

I pointed out to him how much better it would be to leave like Eric Cantona with the fans loving and appreciating him. The crowd still chant Cantona’s name and I told Cristiano: “Leave a hero like Eric” and one day he will… but not yet of course!

Ronaldo came to accept that at this stage of his career, United is the right place for him, and I think Jonny Evans will realise the same.

A number of clubs have bid substantial amounts for Jonny because it is hard to get good defenders of his type. We have turned them all down though because his future's with us.

We have the strong partnership of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic of course but he will get sufficient games to keep him very much part of the first-team scene. His performance against Villarreal showed why one day I believe he will be a regular United centre half.

Read Sir Alex Ferguson's full column in United Review.

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