Wednesday 26 July 2017

Former Real Madrid president believes Cristiano Ronaldo's 'love' for Manchester United could see him return

In this handout image provided by UEFA, Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid poses with the Man of the Match award and Sir Alex Ferguson after the UEFA Champions League Final between Juventus and Real Madrid at National Stadium of Wales on June 3, 2017 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Handout/UEFA via Getty Images)
In this handout image provided by UEFA, Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid poses with the Man of the Match award and Sir Alex Ferguson after the UEFA Champions League Final between Juventus and Real Madrid at National Stadium of Wales on June 3, 2017 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Handout/UEFA via Getty Images)

Samuel Lovett

Former Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon believes that Cristiano Ronaldo’s “love” for Manchester United could play a crucial role in bringing the forward back to the club, eight years after he first left to move to Spain.

Ronaldo has reportedly told his Portugal teammates that he is "determined" to walk away from Real Madrid and “there is no going back” after it first emerged on Friday morning that he wants to leave the club.

According to Portuguese daily A Bola, the 32-year-old, who is currently on international duty with Portugal for the Confederations Cup, has been left angered at his treatment by Spanish tax authorities and now wishes to leave the country.

Ronaldo has subsequently been linked with a return to United, and Calderon, who brought the Portuguese to Real in 2009 when he was in charge at the Bernabeu, has suggested that the player’s “love” for the “club, the fans, the city” could be enough to see him sign for Jose Mourinho this summer.

“He delayed his move to Madrid for a year because Ferguson was like a father to him," Calderon told BBC Radio 5 Live. "He loved the club, the fans, the city and I don't rule out a move back.

"Very few clubs can meet his expectations. Not because they can't pay the money but because they need to offer him the possibility of winning titles and personal awards," he added.

Calderon also addressed suggestions that Ronaldo’s relationship with Mourinho, which was reported to have been fractious during their time together at the Bernabeu, could put the player off from returning to Manchester.

"The relationship in Madrid wasn't the best but that doesn't mean he doesn't want to go back to Manchester where he is very grateful of what happened," the 66-year-old added.

The former Real president was equally dismissive of the idea that Ronaldo could leave Real for China, arguing that the Portugal international has plenty more to offer in Europe.

"I am sure he will stay in Europe. I don't see him playing in China or the Middle East. He is not that type of player. He has three or four more years to be a top, top player and he would like to keep winning titles, anywhere he goes."

Ronaldo himself recently made clear his love for United and England, while criticising sections of Real’s fan base for booing him last season.

"I spent a lot of years at Manchester United and it [home fans booing] never happened to me. Not even once," he said.

"Maybe England is a case apart, the mentality is different.

"I'm very happy being in Spain but obviously I also miss England because you can't just turn off the memories."

Ronaldo admitted that the unsettling reception at the Bernabeu has left him upset on occasions.

He said: "I don't like it and it's not normal that they whistle you in your own stadium. I just don't like it.

"It shouldn't be the case that a player who always wants to give his best and give 100 per cent for this team, when he makes his first mistake people whistle."

(© Independent News Service)

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