Cristiano Ronaldo’s reaction summed up the mood at Old Trafford following Manchester United’s 1-0 loss to Atletico Madrid on Tuesday night. United will be without silverware for the fifth season in a row after being knocked out of the Champions League in the last-16 round on aggregate.
Man United fans “reacted furiously” to the result at the final whistle, and there were “ugly scenes” as Atletico leader Diego Simeone was hit with bottles, according to The Mirror.
As United exited Europe’s top club competition, Ronaldo was “visibly disappointed” as well as the fans.
The Red Devils had a “dismal exit,” according to the Daily Mail. And it also means that Ronaldo has been “condemned to his first season without a title in 17 years.”
“There have been too many years without any trophies, even without battling for trophies,” goalkeeper David De Gea said after the game to BT Sport. “We need a lot more from everyone because this club is just too big for where we are right now.”
According to the BBC’s Phil McNulty, United’s “limitations were made open” as Atletico pulled a “classic Champions League number on them.” At Old Trafford, this seemed like a “watershed moment for those in power.”
McNulty stated that a last-16 exit is “about par for the course given their current weakened standing.” Their only chance of salvaging anything this season is to finish in the top four in the Premier League. Arsenal now sits fourth with 51 points, one more than Manchester United. The Gunners have played three fewer games, but they meet title rivals, Liverpool, on Wednesday.
According to Ian King of Football365, “that’s it” for United in this year’s Champions League. And, given Arsenal’s current form, it’s “probably over for next year as well.” “It would be simple to blame” temporary manager Ralf Rangnick, but “given that this has happened through manager after manager, might it be that the club’s problems run somewhat deeper than just one person?”
Tuchel takes over as manager after the departure of 12 players.
United will rebuild, and the Daily Express has identified every player who is “nowhere near good enough and should leave in the aftermath of the defeat – whether they played or not.” Captain Harry Maguire, Marcus Rashford, and Paul Pogba were among the names on the 12-man squad.
Transfers of players will be a priority for the club this summer, as will the search for a new manager to replace Rangnick, who is in interim charge until the end of the season.
According to The Guardian, United is “watching” Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel. The German’s future at Chelsea is uncertain after the authorities sanctioned the club’s owner, Roman Abramovich. Mauricio Pochettino of Paris Saint-Germain and Erik ten Hag of Ajax are among the other options.