Manchester United striker Cristiano Ronaldo would "rather retire" than become resigned to being a regular substitute under new interim manager Ralf Rangnick.

That is according to former Aston Villa and England striker Gabriel Agbonlahor, who has expressed his concerns about Ronaldo's future under the 63-year-old German.

Ronaldo was dropped to the bench for Sunday's 1-1 draw with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge and some supporters suggested that it could be a sign of things to come under Rangnick — although caretaker boss Michael Carrick made it very clear that it was his decision and Rangnick had no say in his decisions at the weekend.

There are now fears from some quarters that Ronaldo may no longer be a regular fixture in United's strongest starting line-up and that he may be frequently forced to step off the substitutes bench.

Although there has not yet been anything to suggest that will be the case under Rangnick — who is poised to take charge for the first time when United welcome Crystal Palace to Old Trafford on Sunday — Agbonlahor is worried for Ronaldo, suggesting the former Juventus star would prefer to hang up his boots than take up a bit-part role.

Agbonlahor told Football Insider : "If Rangnick has to drop Ronaldo, how will that affect the rest of the squad?

"Ronaldo will be a big voice in that changing room and he won't want to be on the bench. Rangnick will have a problem if he chooses to leave the talisman on the bench.

"Ronaldo will not accept that, no way. He won't mind being rested over Christmas when there are two games, three games in a week. That's different, we all know you have to have rest.

"To not play regularly though, Ronaldo is not that guy. I'm sure Ronaldo would rather retire than be a benchwarmer.

"He's not that guy, he wants to play every game. It will be interesting to see what happens. He could end up retiring."

Since returning to Old Trafford on the final day of the summer transfer window, Ronaldo has been left out of the starting line-up on three separate occasions and United have failed to win a single one of those games.

He is also the club's leading goalscorer this season with 10 goals and has almost, single-handedly, dragged the Reds through the group stages of the Champions League and into the last-16 with a game to spare.

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