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Cristiano Ronaldo's pointed demand to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ignored after Carabao Cup exit

Manchester United crashed out of the Carabao Cup in the third round, losing 1-0 to West Ham at Old Trafford after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer opted to rotate his entire starting XI


Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to Manchester United, was one of the most emotional transfers of a memorable summer window.


Chats with Sir Alex Ferguson, 11th hour U-turns and glorious celebration, his move from Juventus back to the Premier League after 11 years away, had it all.


But once the emotions were calmed, Ronaldo spoke with clarity about what his return to Old Trafford was really about - winning trophies.


"I have a fantastic history with this amazing club,” he said after he was officially announced as a United player again. “I was there at 18 years old and of course I'm so happy to be back home after 12 years. So I'm really glad and looking forward to starting my first game.


"I think it's the best decision that I have made. It's right on point in my opinion.


"I moved from Juve now to Manchester, it's a new chapter, I'm so happy and glad, and I want to carry on again, to make history, to try to help Manchester achieve great results, to win trophies and number one of them, to win great things."


Now, however you dress it up, the Carabao Cup isn’t one of those competitions that sets the pulses racing for teams like Manchester United - but after four years without winning any silverware, it would have done.


That is what perhaps made Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s decision to change his entire starting XI against West Ham on Wednesday all the more confusing.


The Young Boys debacle aside, United have started the season well and with Ronaldo firing in the goals, they look a match for anyone.


But with the momentum halted by a litany of changes, Solskjaer’s side laboured to a 1-0 defeat, ending their League Cup campaign for another season.



Solskjaer hinted that Ronaldo had asked to play on Wednesday night, such is his unbridled determination to bring success back to the club where he won so much in his first spell.


"We decided more or less before Sunday [to make changes]," he told Sky Sports. "Cristiano has come in and made a difference already, he wants to play as much as possible but I don't think it is possible.


"If you are going to be successful at the end, you need the whole squad and minutes to be shared out. “It’s a risk making so many changes but we have played some games behind closed doors and hopefully we find the rhythm."


It was a gamble which didn’t pay off, instantly limiting the scope for success this season.


Trailing, Solskjaer turned to his bench and brought on Bruno Fernandes and Mason Greenwood, but what he would have given to bring on one of the greatest goalscorers of all time.


Solskjaer will hope that a Carabao Cup exit in September doesn’t define the season, but after failing to win a trophy since his appointment, it’s a risky stance.


Particularly with his new No.7 desperate to win any trophies that he can get his hands on.