Manchester United Transfer News: Odds on Cristiano Ronaldo Returning to EPL

Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IFebruary 28, 2013

BARCELONA, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 26:  Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid celebrates scoring his sides opening goal during the Copa del Rey semi final second leg match between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid CF at the Camp Nou on February 26, 2013 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

Manchester United is looking at the possibility of acquiring Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo in the summer, according to Chris Wheeler of the Daily Mail.

The question is, could United ever land the Portuguese star?

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has called Ronaldo "unbuyable," per the Daily Mail report. After the 28-year-old swung home two goals against Barcelona in the Nou Camp on Tuesday, it's no wonder why.

But Wheeler also notes that "there is a growing belief among the club" that a transfer for Ronaldo isn't as crazy as it may seem.

Ronaldo isn't completely in love with Real. He's spoken before of not getting enough respect in Spain. It also didn't help Real's case when the club failed to meet his contractual demands and then Lionel Messi scored a boatload with Barca.

Still, Ronaldo has said he will play out his contract with the club and it's unlikely he will change that stance.

On the other hand, Real may not be able to keep him for the next two years, seeing that Madrid president Florentino Perez is under substantial pressure with presidential elections set for June. Talks are expected at the end of the season, according to Wheeler.

If Ronaldo departs the Bernabeu before his contract runs out in 2015, United would appear to have the upper hand. United has first shot at Ronaldo because of the terms of his transfer to Madrid in 2009. Wheeler writes that Ronaldo would likely come at a price tag of around £60 million for Madrid (although his wages would boost the overall cost to more than £100 million).

I would place United's odds of landing their former star at about 40 percent at this point. It still seems unlikely with the money involved.

But it's not out of the question that Ronaldo leaves Real. In that case, United would appear to be the one club that would give him the best chance of returning to the Premier League, with Manchester City a second legitimate option for the superstar.

 

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