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Ten Hag hints Cristiano Ronaldo's punishment may last more than one game

Cristiano Ronaldo will miss Manchester United's match with Chelsea on Saturday, but manager Erik ten Hag has left the door open on the striker missing more time.

The Portuguese star has been left out of the Red Devils squad following his refusal to enter the midweek game against Tottenham, but the Dutchman says there will be more talks regarding his reintroduction to the team.

"I am counting on Cristiano Ronaldo for the rest of the season," Ten Hag told Football Daily.

"He is out for this game and then we'll continue. Cristiano is still an important part of the team, and I am counting on him for the rest of the season."

Possible return against Sheriff

However Ten Hag was non-committal when asked when Ronaldo will rejoin the squad.

"Cristiano is training to stay fit and prepare for the next game against Sheriff," he said.

"Will he come back on Monday? We'll talk first. Will it be longer? I don't think so, no.

"I don't want to miss him. I want him to be in the team and involved because he has an impact."

Ten Hag reiterated that Ronaldo's exclusion from the team was necessary given he didn't live up to the club's standards.

"I don't like this method but I have to do it," said Ten Hag. "It doesn't matter who you are, it doesn't matter what your reputation is."

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