Cristiano Ronaldo’s fairytale return to Manchester United could be over after just one season.
According to The Times, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner has asked to be allowed to leave the club if they receive a ‘satisfactory offer’ for his services ahead of the 2022/23 season.
The news has sent shockwaves through the sporting world this weekend, but truth be told, the most painful thing for United is that the transfer development makes so much sense.
Ronaldo wants Man Utd exit
While Ronaldo might have enjoyed an impressive season from an individual perspective, scoring 24 goals, there’s no denying that it was a disastrous campaign for the Red Devils overall.
United will not be competing in the Champions League next year having slumped to a sixth-place finish in the Premier League with their lowest points tally since the top-flight’s 1992 rebranding.
And with Ronaldo firmly in the twilight of his career at 37 years old, both the report and common sense indicate that the Portuguese superstar does not want to be lingering in the Europa League.
The time pressure on Ronaldo to secure a flurry of team and individual prizes has never been more intense, and that could well mean that he’s already played his final ever game for United.
However, the major caveat to this entire situation and the original report from which it all emanates is the fact that Ronaldo needs to find himself an appropriate suitor willing to cough up the cash.
And while there were a few tantalizing details on Ronaldo’s potential next club in The Times’ report, it’s still early days when it comes to assessing where the legendary striker might choose for the 2022/23 season and beyond.
“Lisandro Martinez to Man United ADVANCED!” (Football Terrace)
Odds on Ronaldo’s next club
So, at this stage, the most intriguing way to hypothesize on where Ronaldo might go next if he does indeed leave United centers around the bookmakers’ odds.
Who are they considering to be the most likely next stop in Ronaldo’s illustrious career? Well, to find out, we unearthed BetVictor’s wide-ranging odds on who the United icon is most likely to sign ahead of the September 4th deadline.
And it’s fair to say that the results were fascinating with everything from a cross-Premier League move to a link up with Paris Saint-Germain being touted, so be sure to check out the odds – correct at the time of writing – for yourself down below:
=8. Tottenham Hotspur – 25/1
=8. Liverpool – 25/1
=8. Arsenal – 25/1
=8. Manchester City – 25/1
=6. Chelsea – 20/1
=6. Sporting Lisbon – 20/1
5. Paris Saint-Germain – 14/1
4. Juventus – 12/1
3. AS Roma – 6/1
2. Real Madrid – 5/1
- Bayern Munich – 4/1
Where will Ronaldo go?
Right, gosh, there’s plenty to unpack there.
First and foremost, we can surely rule out clubs that won’t be playing in the Champions League next season with Ronaldo reportedly wanting to continue competing at the highest level of European football.
That means AS Roma and Arsenal are immediately off the table.
Furthermore, we find it pretty hard to imagine Ronaldo betraying United by switching to another Premier League club, so our gut also suggests removing City, Spurs, Liverpool and Chelsea from contention.
PSG have to go because surely to goodness every Financial Fair Play rule under the sun would be broken if they boasted Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Neymar and Kylian Mbappe in the same dressing room.
Chuck out what would be a jarringly-swift return to a Juventus team very much in flux and that leaves us with three clubs that we consider to be the most feasible suitors: Real, Bayern and Sporting CP.
All three are Champions League clubs with a chance of winning their own domestic leagues who could feasibly give into the temptation of letting Ronaldo lead their line for a handful of seasons.
Our gut tells us that Bayern would be the best option given that Robert Lewandowski wants to leave, their style of play suits a number nine, it would be a new nation for Ronaldo and the league title is pretty much guaranteed.
Although, of course, if Real can find a way to wind back the clock and rebuild Ronaldo and Benzema’s iconic partnership then perhaps ending one reunion with another might be the way forward.
But for now, we’ve got to put our hands up and concede that it’s just a fun piece of speculation because there is still a lot of working out to be done by both Ronaldo and United over the coming days.
Nevertheless, everything seems to point towards an epic transfer saga that we won’t be able to take our eyes off. There’s never a quiet day in the life of Ronaldo.
News Now – Sports News