Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo's Real Madrid future remains in doubt. Reuters

Cristiano Ronaldo has been advised to see out the remaining two years of his contract with Real Madrid before seeking a lucrative free transfer -- a move that would make him affordable to Manchester United, claims an exclusive in the Independent. The former idol to the Old Trafford crowd has been repeatedly linked with a move away from Madrid in recent months and last week insisted that reports claiming he was set to sign a new contract were untrue.

But, while there is a belief that Ronaldo remains discontented with the club he joined for a record £80 million in 2009, it always appeared unlikely that United would be able to afford a financial package to tempt both Madrid and Ronaldo to do a deal. That is especially true with reports that nouveau-riche Ligue 1 duo Monaco and Paris Saint-Germain were prepared to offer £85 million for the 28-year-old.

But Ronaldo will likely have hesitations about both moves and his agent Jorge Medes has stressed to him the personal benefits of waiting to move as a free agent on a deal that he could agree in 18 months’ time, reports the Independent. Indeed it is said that he could earn €140 million (£118m) from a huge signing on fee and massive wages. That, apparently, would be financially feasible for his former club.

However, if Ronaldo were to decide to run his contract down, Madrid will likely look to cash in on the player, possibly this summer, to prevent his value decreasing and eventually leaving for nothing. There is a very different take on affairs on, with claims that Ronaldo is in advanced negotiations with Madrid to sign a new contract that would make him the world’s highest-earning player.

Manchester United are believed to be keen to pull off a marquee signing this summer to kick-start the David Moyes era, with Barcelona’s Cesc Fabregas also featuring in their plans. There have been claims that initial contact has been made to try and lure the former Arsenal captain back to the Premier League, yet the midfielder continues to claim that he wants to stay at the Camp Nou. And the 26-year-old has now revealed that he hasn’t been contacted by anyone about a move.

"People talk a lot but the truth is that no-one has spoken with me,” he said, according to Sky Sports. "I want to triumph in Barcelona, that club is my home and I always dreamed of playing there, so I will try and succeed there as long as I can."

United are also widely believed to hold an interest in Fabregas’s fellow-Barcelona midfielder Thiago Alcantara. The 22-year-old has a clause in his contract allowing him to leave for just €18 million (£15.4m) until the end of July after failing to make a set number of appearances in the past season.

Barcelona-based sports daily Mundo Deportivo reports that the Spanish champions remain keen for the Spain international to stay at the club and see him as an important part of their future. But it is said that Thiago will decide his future after he takes part in Tuesday’s final of the European Under-21 Championship, with talks likely between him and the club in the coming days.

Another United midfield target had also been expressing doubts about his future at his current club in recent days. But Juventus now insist that Italy international Claudio Marchisio will be staying with the club, barring a sensational offer.

“We have never thought about selling Marchisio,” Juventus general manager Beppe Marotta told "It seems to me that the clearest demonstration about Marchisio's importance to Juventus was the contract renewal we signed in September 2012 until June 2016 which changed his salary. We would only review the situation if a stratospheric offer arrived that wasn't in line with the market and that, until now, hasn't arrived."

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