A day after reports in Spain claimed that Cristiano Ronaldo would not be signing a new contract with Real Madrid, the British tabloids have picked up the story and further fuelled speculation of a potential return for the Portuguese forward to Manchester United.
Following stories of Ronaldo’s unhappiness at Madrid, Spanish publication AS stated that the problems stretched beyond financial and that even a massive wage hike could not persuade him to extend his deal beyond the summer of 2015.
The Daily Mirror reports that Paris Saint-Germain would be willing to pay £90 million for Ronaldo in the summer, while Manchester City would also be interested. However, according to the Mirror, United could leap to the front of the queue with their plans to bring in current Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho as the club’s next manager and reunite him with Ronaldo at Old Trafford.
Madrid defender Raul Albiol has said he knows nothing about Ronaldo’s plans.
"I don't know if he's going to renew his contract or not,” he said, according to Sky Sports. “But Cristiano Ronaldo is the best in the world and we want him by our side as long as possible."
United would undoubtedly love to welcome back a player that established himself as one of the club’s all-time greats during his six years at the club and Ronaldo too may be keen for a return having always spoken highly of his time at the club. The massive stumbling block to any deal, though, is always likely to be United’s ability to offer the huge transfer it is likely to require to pries him away from Real Madrid.
According to the Independent, Manchester United’s unwillingness to pay a club’s asking price also prevented Leighton Baines joining from Everton in the summer. The Merseysiders are said to be seeking £15 million for the left-back, who United were believed to be seeking as a potential replacement for Patrice Evra.
The Independent now reports that Chelsea have joined United and Paris Saint-Germain in the hunt to sign England international Baines. However, it is claimed that Everton boss David Moyes will not countenance a move in January, with a switch more likely next summer.
Meanwhile, Montpellier’s highly-rated defender Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa has spoken of his dream to turn out in a Manchester United shirt. The France international has been strongly linked to both Milan and Arsenal in the past, while United are also said to have monitored the 23-year-old.
According to Manchester United’s official website, Yanga-Mbiwa, when asked by France Football about his aspirations for 2013, only has eyes for the Red Devils.
“My dream is to slide on my knees to the corner of the pitch at Old Trafford with a Manchester United shirt on my back,” he said. “I play for MU, my favorite club and I'm scoring a decisive goal with a header from a corner. Yes, that'd be fine."
Yanga- Mbiwa recently signed a new contract to keep him at Montpellier beyond next summer. However, having only tied him down to a two-year extension, it is possible that the French champions were merely attempting to assure they received a fee when he moves on. Montpellier are currently struggling in midtable in Ligue 1 meaning that a move next summer for Yanga-Mbiwa could be a strong possibility.
Sports reporter, mainly focusing on my native sport of soccer, but also dabbling in some tennis and Formula One.