Agent Jorge Mendes is reportedly pulling out all the stops to get Cristiano Ronaldo his move away from Man Utd this summer.
The Portugal international made it clear to the Red Devils board earlier in the summer that he wants to leave Old Trafford before the transfer deadline.
However, Ronaldo hasn’t had the level of interest he probably expected with only an unnamed Saudi Arabian club showing concrete interest in the 37-year-old.
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There were reports yesterday that Sporting Lisbon were ’99 per cent’ there with a deal for Ronaldo but Man Utd sources have now poured cold water on that speculation.
Ronaldo has always played in the Champions League and, with Man Utd finishing sixth in the Premier League last season, he faces his first campaign without the competition, unless he can secure a move away.
And Italian journalist Gianluca di Marzio now claims that Ronaldo’s agent Mendes is ‘trying in every way to avoid’ the Portugal international having to settle for a season of Europa League football.
Mendes is currently ‘trying’ to place Ronaldo at Napoli and ‘contacts have been resumed in the last hours after a first chat at the beginning of August’.
And Di Marzio adds that Mendes ‘could resolve the issue’ surrounding Ronaldo ‘by bringing Napoli an important offer’ from Man Utd ‘for a possible sale of [Victor] Osimhen’.
He reckons Man Utd ‘could take the Nigerian to replace the Portuguese’ by making a ‘triple-digit’ offer of €100m or more, despite nothing being on the table so far.
Mendes still needs to persuade the Premier League club – who are set to fork out a lot of money for Ajax winger Antony – and Di Marzio continues by saying there has been ‘no negotiation set up to date, but a further and simple new contact has arrived regarding a strategic plan by Mendes’.
A deal for Osimhen – who scored 18 goals in 32 matches in all competitions last term for Napoli – is ‘not easy’ and Mendes is also trying ‘to implement the same’ strategy at AC Milan but instead of Osimhen, he is suggesting Rafael Leao.
Mendes has also spoken to Chelsea, Marseille and Sporting Lisbon, as well as other clubs about Ronaldo with less than a week left of the summer transfer window.
If Ronaldo can’t find a move away from Old Trafford this summer then not only will he be without Champions League football, but he could also face a season on the bench.