Cristiano Ronaldo: Why He Will Still Be a Real Madrid Player Next Season
"I haven't spoken to anyone yet, [but] I know we will reach an agreement on a new contract. The most important thing now is the national team."
Those were the words dished out by Cristiano Ronaldo, via Goal.com, ahead of Portugal's recent internationals against Russia and Croatia—they won both 1-0, with Ronaldo the match-winner in the latter.
Although several days after that comment, he tweeted, "news about my renewal with Real Madrid are false," leading to the rumor mill revving its unnecessarily loud engine.
All the news about my renewal with Real Madrid are false.— Cristiano Ronaldo (@Cristiano) June 13, 2013
It was particularly loud this time because the 28-year old had already been the focus of several transfer stories this summer.
Manchester United, via The Telegraph, have been repeatedly linked with making a move to bring their former No. 7 back to Old Trafford, while Monaco, via The Guardian, are said to be ready and waiting to let him build his own contract should he decide to leave the Bernabeu.
That's unlikely to be the case though.
Despite Monaco being able to make him the game's highest paid player, it's unlikely Ronaldo will see the draw. He'll turn 29 in the coming season and it's highly improbable he will want to sacrifice a year in the Champions League, maybe more—this is a man whose competitiveness has driven him to where he stands today.
A return to England's northwest may be a more appealing option, but you can't help but feel it's a touch sentimental on both sides—it's not very 'Manchester United' to revisit the past.
The final option, and the one making headway in the plausibility stakes, is that he just sits tight on his current deal.
Ronaldo, via The Independent, has supposedly been advised to sit tight on his contract—which runs until 2015—which could have two repercussions.
The first one leads to one humongous payday for him—and his agent Jorge Mendes, of course—as there will be no fee dished out when his contract expires. The second is the possibility of los Blancos selling him on the cheap next summer, unable to take the risk of losing him for free.
In the meantime, Florentino Perez will still seek to tempt his star asset to jot his name on a new contract, via The Independent:
[Ronaldo] currently takes home £8.4 million basic pay topped up by a further £6.3m in bonuses. He also earns £13.5m in commercial deals. Madrid are willing to boost his annual basic take home pay to £12.7m and negotiate his image rights—taking a slightly smaller cut.
Monaco's money and Manchester United's prestige and Champions League participation, together, may have been enough to tempt the Portuguese to consider his future in Spain, but separately they seem unlikely to entice.
The latest tweet from the man himself, for what it's worth, is with a focus on pre-season in Florida with Real Madrid.
Next season he'll be in the white of Madrid, whether he'll have signed a new contract is not as clear.
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