The football world awoke to some stunning news on Friday as reports surfaced that Cristiano Ronaldo has made an “irreversible decision” to leave Real Madrid.
Citing the superstar’s anger over his treatment by Spain’s state prosecutor regarding an alleged tax fraud, the 32-year-old striker’s mind sounds like it’s made up, if multiple reports throughout Europe are to be believed.
If Ronaldo does make what is sure to be a big-money move, where will he end up? Of course there are plenty of options, but here are four of the more intriguing clubs at which the Portuguese striker could land.
A high-priced move to the Parisian giants might be the most likely of moves for the 32-year-old Ronaldo.
PSG is coming off a disappointing 2016-17 campaign in which it failed to claim a Ligue 1 title for the first time since 2011-12 and was embarrassed by Barcelona as victims of the largest comeback in Champions League history. It also helps that the Rouge-et-Bleu has the money it would take to bring Ronaldo to the French capital – reportedly as much as 180 million Euros.
Despite it’s recent domestic success, PSG has longed to be champions of Europe yet the accomplishment has eluded the club. Bringing in the best scorer on the planet could make the difference.
A United reunion would be a great story.
Ronaldo left Manchester eight years ago this month after seven trophy-filled seasons with the Red Devils, including three Premier League titles and a Champions League title. And while Ronaldo has continued the trophy haul in Spain, Man United has failed to reach those same heights since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson.
But after bringing in Jose Mourinho and Paul Pogba, among others, United appear to be on the upswing. Back in the Champions League and with eyes on its first Premier League title since 2012-13, the only thing Manchester United is missing is a goal-scorer – a much bigger void following the release of Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Ronaldo and his 369 European league goals would go a long way to solving that issue.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s Real Madrid record:
3 Ballon d’Or
3 Champions League pic.twitter.com/Kl14sI63kI
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) June 16, 2017
A move to Major League Soccer has always been rumoured for the Portuguese superstar. And while we had previously stated that a move to the United States wasn’t in the cards, he did say in a January 2016 issue of GQ that a move across the Atlantic “is maybe going to be possible.”
Following in the footsteps of former Manchester United star David Beckham, relocation to Los Angeles would be a smart move for Ronaldo’s global brand. But at 32, he’s shown no signs of slowing down and would conceivably dominate in a league that, while making strides talent-wise over recent years, does not compare to Europe’s top leagues. For that reason, we still may be a few years away from seeing Ronaldo playing in North America.
A reunion with the club where it all began for Ronaldo may seem like a long shot, but it’s not be as far-fetched as one might think.
Not only do some odds makers give SCP the fifth-best odds to land their former forward this summer, club president Bruno de Carvalho expressed a desire to bring Ronaldo back to Sporting to cap his illustrious career ahead of their Champions League match against Real Madrid last fall.
“He represents a lot for us and it would be beautiful if he could end his career here,” de Carvalho told Marca (via The Daily Mail). “He is a world ambassador. He always speaks well about us and how fond he is of us.”
But while a Ronaldo return to Sporting would be a dream come true for the club’s fans, much like a move to L.A., a return to Portugal seems more likely in the twilight of the star striker’s career.