Source: Cristiano Ronaldo via Facebook
With the capture of stalwart defender Victor Lindelof from Benfica for £30.7 million already completed, Manchester United have made a statement of intent in this transfer window. Jose Mourinho is targeting a Premier League win in his second season in charge at Old Trafford, and will be granted the funds necessary to bring in some of the world’s best. He may even get the riches required to secure the signature of the world’s greatest, as recent reports suggest that Cristiano Ronaldo is keen to return to where his glittering career began.
It recently emerged that Ronaldo was furious over tax fraud allegations in Spain, and tasked his agent Jorge Mendes with arranging his immediate exit from Real Madrid this summer. It is thought that the Euro 2016 winner would be open to a return to the club at which he made his name, to live out a fairytale end to his outstanding footballing journey. If United did manage to secure the services of the four-time Ballon d’Or winner, it would vastly improve their chances of bettering last season’s dismal sixth-place finish. At the time of writing, Mourinho’s men are 7/2 in the 888sport Premier League betting, but if the Santiago Bernabeu star returned they would no doubt emerge as frontrunners for the title. But just how feasible is it?
If Ronaldo was to leave the Spanish capital, there are a few factors that suggest that Old Trafford would be his destination. First of all, the player is known to have a soft spot for the club that made him the star he is today, and where he won his first Champions League trophy. Secondly, he has worked alongside Mourinho in the past and has a good relationship with his fellow countryman. In addition to that, the two world beaters share the same agent. Finally, United proved that they are willing to throw staggering sums of money at players if they deem them to be essential to the club’s success. They proved that with Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimović last season, with the superstars reportedly earning around £165,000 and £367,000-a-week respectively.
There is, however, the small matter of persuading the Real Madrid hierarchy to part ways with their prized asset. The president of the club, Fiorentino Perez, has recently come out and said that Ronaldo would not be sold this summer. The prolific attacker who has scored 285 goals in 265 La Liga appearances has a buyout clause of £785 million, which may serve to deter United. Although it would be a dream move to bring Ronaldo back to the club, he is 32 years old and only has a few more peak years left in him.
If Ronaldo is truly desperate for a move, he could make life difficult for the Real Madrid board and they may be forced to sell him for a lot less than the stipulated buyout clause. If this comes to fruition then United have the likes of David de Gea that they could decide to use as a bargaining tool. Red Devils fans should keep their excitement at bay for now, because although it would be amazing, a return for Ronaldo is still fairly unlikely. But there’s no harm in hoping though, is there?