Cristiano Ronaldo Would Be Crazy to Move to Manchester United This Summer

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJuly 15, 2013

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 05:  Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid reacts after scoring his team's second goal during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Second leg match between Manchester United and Real Madrid at Old Trafford on March 5, 2013 in Manchester, United Kingdom.  (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

Sometimes reunions aren't always the best thing.

Until Cristiano Ronaldo signs on the dotted line of his new contract at Real Madrid, rumors of his exit will not cease.

Simon Stone of the Press Association (via the Daily Mail) is the latest to get in on the fun:

Manchester United are ready to splurge on a world class player like Cristiano Ronaldo or Gareth Bale, after the club admitted they would back David Moyes if he wants to sign a 'stellar player' this summer.

New manager Moyes has only made one signing so far this summer, with Guillermo Varela joining for an undisclosed fee.

But the club's chief executive Ed Woodward insists the resources are there to recruit top-drawer talent and said they are 'absolutely' able to compete for players in the £60million-£70million bracket.

'We haven't got money burning a hole in our pocket but we have got a strategy on player purchases and if David wants to go after a stellar player he can do that,' he said.

Assuming a long-term deal is on the way at Madrid, why would Ronaldo want to move to Old Trafford?

He had a very successful run there and holds United close to his heart, as evidenced by his goal celebration, or lack thereof, when he scored against the Red Devils in the Champions League.

Supporters often overstate how much footballers think about and value loyalty. How many big stars have pledged their loyalty to a club, only to move within the year?

Footballers want to be comfortable and loved at a club, but they don't value that over getting more money and playing for a bigger club. They put their careers first and leave emotions at the door. You cannot really blame them because just about any professional would leave a job for more money and a better situation.

When you compare Real Madrid and Manchester United, the Spanish club gets the edge.

Despite winning the Premier League, the future is still a bit in doubt at Old Trafford.

Sir Alex Ferguson leaves a long shadow—it's always hard to replace a legend. Look how long it took United to become successful again after Matt Busby's departure. David Moyes has done well at Everton, but whether he can carry that over to Manchester United is still very much up in the air.

He has never been in a situation like this before; playing for the title and playing for a place in the top eight are two very different things. Then, there's the cauldron that is the Champions League.

Plus, you've got Chelsea bringing in Jose Mourinho and Manchester City hiring Manuel Pellegrini. Both of those are upgrades from their predecessors, and should mean Chelsea and City are much more competitive in the Premier League next year.

Until Moyes proves himself, it's probably better to stay away from United.

Real Madrid, on the other hand, are only strengthening this summer. Carlo Ancelotti should be a much more calming presence in the dressing room, far from the polarizing figure Mourinho was. Ancelotti knows how to handle a lot of big stars, and he won't try to become bigger than the club.

He was just about the most optimal replacement for the "Special One."

Then, you've also got the mess that Barcelona look to be right now. The Catalans have done nothing to address their problems at the back. Meanwhile, they've got their former manager criticizing the club's board, per The Guardian. Thiago Alcantara has left, per The Telegraph, and Cesc Fabregas might be on the way out as well, per the BBC's Ben Smith.

All of that spells good things for Real Madrid as they can sit back and watch Barcelona implode from within. Los Blancos are always going to finish in the top two of La Liga, and you've got to favor them right now to win the league next year.

The chances of Madrid winning their domestic league are certainly greater than those of United winning their domestic league. If Ronaldo wants to put himself in the best position to win, he should stay at Madrid.

The one edge that United could get is financially. However, The Telegraph's Mark Ogden reported last week that Florentino Perez was planning on making Ronaldo the highest-paid footballer in the world. If that comes to fruition, the Red Devils would lose all of their bargaining power.

This isn't a time to let sentimentality cloud what would be the much better career move for Ronaldo: staying at Real Madrid.