Welcome home! Man Utd announce Cristiano Ronaldo return

Date published: Friday 27th August 2021 5:56 - Ian Watson

Cristiano Ronaldo

Manchester United have agreed a deal for Cristiano Ronaldo to return to the club from Juventus.

The 36-year-old is set to return to Old Trafford 12 years after leaving for Real Madrid.

United said the deal was subject to the agreement of personal terms, visa and a medical.

A United statement said: “Everyone at the club looks forward to welcoming Cristiano back to Manchester.”

Ronaldo had been heavily linked with a move to United’s neighbours Manchester City.

City were offered the 36-year-old, who had made it clear he wanted to leave Juventus, and were considered front-runners for his signature but decided the deal was not one they wished to pursue.

United appeared to become an option when manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer held a press conference on Friday afternoon and said their former star “knows that we’re here”.

Solskjaer added that United midfielder Bruno Fernandes has been talking to his compatriot Ronaldo.

Asked why Ronaldo had supposedly been heading to the Etihad instead of Old Trafford, Solskjaer said: “I didn’t think Cristiano was going to turn out leaving Juventus.

“It’s been speculation this morning, speculation the last few days, of course. We’ve always had a good communication – I know Bruno (Fernandes) has been talking to him as well. He knows what we feel about him and if he was ever going to move away from Juventus, he knows that we’re here.

“He’s such a tremendous human being as well, so let’s see what happens with Cristiano. Everyone who has played with him, I think, has a soft spot for him.”

Ronaldo scored 118 goals during six seasons at Old Trafford between 2003 and 2009, helping the club win three Premier League titles, a Champions League, the FIFA Club World Cup, two League Cups and one FA Cup.

Cristiano Ronaldo Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Having missed out on Harry Kane, City did weigh up the possibility of signing Ronaldo, but came to the conclusion that the Portuguese was not the right fit for Pep Guardiola’s squad.

Speaking at a press conference ahead of his side’s game with Arsenal on Saturday, Guardiola had been reluctant to be drawn on the subject.

“I cannot say much,” the City manager said. “Harry Kane announced he is continuing with his club, an exceptional club like Tottenham. Cristiano is a Juventus player, I cannot add anything else.

“In these three or four days left until the transfer window shuts anything can happen, but, in my view, there are few players – Cristiano Ronaldo included, (Lionel) Messi is another – they decide where they are going to play.

“I say the same, Cristiano will decide where he wants to play, not Man City or myself. Right now it seems far, far away.”

Ronaldo had earlier told Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri that he felt his future lay elsewhere.

“Yesterday, Cristiano told me that he no longer has any intention to play for Juventus. For this reason he will not be called up for tomorrow’s game,” Allegri said at a press conference ahead of the club’s Serie A match against Empoli in quotes posted on the official Juventus Twitter account.

“Cristiano is to be thanked for what he has done, also as an example amongst the youngsters. But as I said, we must go on.

“Things change, it’s a law of life. Juventus remains, which is the most important thing. Cristiano gave his contribution, he made himself available, now he leaves and life goes on.”

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