If Real Madrid hope to remain at the forefront of European football, they’ll need a little help from the face of the club. From the looks of the current situation, Cristiano Ronaldo is only causing problems.
Ronaldo is in search of a new contract that will potentially take the club out of the running for Tottenham Hotspur superstar Gareth Bale, who, according to Neil Custis of The Sun, could potentially be had for a transfer fee of an astounding £85 million.
The richest club in the world, Real have the cash to swing such a deal. But if The Sun’s Mark Irwin is correct, Ronaldo could be throwing a monkey wrench into the equation.
According to Irwin, Ronaldo wants to be the highest-paid player in the world, his demands likely exceeding Lionel Messi’s yearly salary by as much as £3 million. Along with wanting 100 percent of his image rights (equating to as much as £15 million per year), Ronaldo could make it extremely difficult for Real to acquire another superstar talent like Bale.
As Irwin also noted, Ronaldo’s demands for a new contract are a result of wanting to surpass Messi as the brightest star in football:
“But sources close to Ronaldo have indicated the player’s demands are not motivated by greed but his determination to prove himself to be the biggest star in the world.”
Greed comes in many forms, and in this case, Ronaldo’s greed for popularity is unfairly putting Real in a very difficult spot.
At this moment, Real may be able to afford the £85 million for Bale. If Ronaldo were to play out the final two years of his current contract as is, the Spanish side would be in a position to field two of the top players in the world without added financial strain caused by a new contract for Ronaldo.
But with the 28-year-old demanding more money in an extension, Real have to consider the financial realities of the situation. And as a result, securing Bale doesn’t seem quite as likely.
Contract disputes are par for the course in major European football, but winning has to be a part of the equation for any star, especially one who, though surrounded by a solid cast, still carries the club all too often. With Bale in the fold, Ronaldo would have another tremendous talent to help shoulder the burden and put Real well ahead of the competition from a competitive standpoint.
As it stands, Ronaldo’s future is still in question. Real are unlikely to accept any amount for the superstar before exhausting all other options, but at what point will they rule out the option of breaking the bank to retain him?
With two years left on his current contract, Ronaldo shouldn’t be forcing his club’s hand—especially with the possibility of that club adding another superstar talent to the mix.