â€œNo one expected Cristiano to ever return to Manchester, except if Real Madrid play here. Heâ€™s instructed his people to clear out his home and sort out his cars,â€ a source from Manchester United said.
Yes, Cristiano Ronaldo is leaving the rainy and cosy city of Manchester where he spent six years as a professional footballer. The grown kid of Madeira is heading to the sunny Spanish capital where he will embrace the likes of big star players like Kaka, Raul, Casillas, and the likes of new comers like Karim Benzema and Raul Albiol, and possibly Ribery. A new era at the galactic club named Real Madrid is set to begin soon, and Cristiano Ronaldo will be part of the history.
Ronaldo: Goodbye to you, dear Manchester United and Alex Ferguson
The days he had in Manchester United are now part of the past, but Cristiano Ronaldo explained that everything at the club will always remain in his heart. Speaking to the media today, the 24-year-old Fifa Player of the Year and Golden Ball winner revealed:
“I was a boy when I arrived at Manchester and now I’m leaving a man. This club and its fans will always have a place in my heart,”
Alex Ferguson was the main factor behind Cristiano Ronaldoâ€™s development from an unknown skilful kid called a â€œclownâ€, to the best player on the planet. Talking about the old Scot, Ronaldo continued:
“I can never repay the confidence he has shown in me over the years. He made me aware that I would be one of the best players in the world, he gave me that belief. He gave me the No 7 shirt because he believed I could do it justice.”
It has been reported that Cristiano Ronaldo flied with a private jet from Portugal to Manchester to meet Alex Ferguson for a final goodbye.
The pair met at a restaurant in Alderley Edge Hotel which is believed to be one of Alex Fergusonâ€™s favourite restaurants.
Commentating on the secret meeting between Cristiano Ronaldo and Alex Ferguson, a source at the hotel explained:
â€œIt was a low-key affair. Cristiano just wanted to say thanks for everything Sir Alex had done for him.â€
Ronaldo: Iâ€™d better quit before I get a deadly kick!
Cristiano Ronaldoâ€™s childhood dream of playing for Real Madrid is the main reason behind his departure from Manchester United to the Spanish capital. However, the fleet-footed Portuguese winger also singled out another reason for his decision to leave the English Premier League.
Speaking to the media, Ronaldo said:
“There are some teams who know they can’t compete with you on a football level, so they just kick you.
“It’s frustrating and something needs to be done to protect the skilful players because one day someone will get seriously hurt. I think more could be done to protect us but that is up to the referees to decide.”
Cristiano Ronaldo played much of the 2007/2008 EPL season under pain caused by constant fouls which he suffered in almost every game. This prevented the current World Player of the Year from performing at his best during the 2008 European Championship. Later after Portugal crushed out from the tournament, it was decided that Ronaldo had to undergo surgery. It took some time for Ronaldo to recover and only his will to return to the pitch quickly pushed him to recover sooner than it was expected.
Almost the perfect goodbye…
The 2008/2009 season didnâ€™t see Cristiano Ronaldo perform at its highest level. Certainly, his ankle operation (which made him miss a part of that season) had an effect on his form. Either way, his 18 goals in the Premier League helped Manchester United to win the crown for the third straight time. Manchester United also won the Carling Cup after an excellent Fifa World Club Cup campaign far away in Japan.
In the last weeks of the season, Cristiano Ronaldo displayed some good football. His wonder goal against Porto and his brace against Arsenal in the Champions League describe it all.
In his final game for Manchester United in Rome, Cristiano Ronaldo was at the centre of attraction for the opening ten minutes. He gave a real scare to Barcelona, but after Manchester Unitedâ€™s defence stumbled to a goal from Samuel Etoâ€™o, it was all over for the Red Devils.
The former European defending champions finally had their crown removed after their 2-0 defeat to Barcelona.
In all, we can say that Manchester United had a good season and Cristiano Ronaldo is happy when he takes a look back at it. However, he would have wished for a perfect goodbye.
“It was nice to leave after winning another title, but it would have been perfect to win another European Cup. That defeat really hurt so when people say you don’t show loyalty, I just don’t listen.”
Cristiano Ronaldo now has his eyes turned on Real Madrid â€“ the club he always dreamed about as a kid. His career at Manchester United seemed to be six years of hard work, reward, and temptations.
Will Cristiano Ronaldo turn around the anguishing feeling of losing his final game for Manchester United by kicking his Real Madrid career in style?
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Written by: Angela Asante