Manchester United

Chris Wilder imposes Cristiano Ronaldo 'ban' ahead of FA Cup clash with Man Utd

Middlesbrough players have been banned from swapping shirts with Cristiano Ronaldo
Middlesbrough players have been banned from swapping shirts with Cristiano Ronaldo / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Key summary:

1) Wilder doesn't want his players to swap shirts with any Man Utd player on the field, including Ronaldo

2) He wants his Middlesbrough players to play and give their best for their fans.

3) Middlesbrough players will not sit back and will attack Manchester United.

Chris Wilder has banned his Middlesbrough players from swapping shirts with any Manchester United player on the pitch, including Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Championship side take on the Red Devils in the fourth round of the FA Cup at Old Trafford on Friday.

And while it is only natural for the players to be excited about facing Ronaldo and his teammates, Middlesbrough manager Wilder has banned his players from swapping shirts on the pitch.

As per the Mirror, the Boro manager said: "Their team sheet will come in the dressing room and it'll be De Gea, Varane, Harry Maguire… let's not crumble in that process!

"They have some fabulous individuals that can hurt you, and hurt teams around Europe and the Premier League. A huge array of talent to choose from. But it is not sight-seeing for our players. It is not a shirt-swapping situation. I don't want people going to Old Trafford to enjoy the visit.

"If they want a shirt, do it in the changing rooms after. We don't want to be looking at them all fuzzy-eyed. They are up against a competitor. I want them to play well. To give a good account of themselves and make it a competitive, dangerous night for Manchester United."

Wilder, who previously managed Sheffield United, oversaw a famous 2-1 victory at Old Trafford last year, two months before he was given his marching orders by the Blades who were eventually relegated from the Premier League.

He added: "This is an obligation to play well for our 9,000 fans at the game and those watching on TV. We want to go to Old Trafford on a regular basis in the seasons to come.

“We need a structure and a shape so we are not picked off by world-class players but we will have an opportunity to play and we won’t be sitting on the crossbar for 95 minutes.

“We have to be ambitious and aggressive when we have a chance to cause them problems.”