Cristiano Ronaldo Remaining with Real Madrid Is Big Blow to Manchester United

Alex BallentineFeatured ColumnistJuly 23, 2013

MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 17:  Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid CF celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the Copa del Rey Final match between Real Madrid CF and Club Atletico de Madrid at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 17, 2013 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo/ Getty Images)  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Manchester United could have guaranteed that they remain atop the Premier League standings for the foreseeable future by locking up a return of Cristiano Ronaldo this summer. 

Unfortunately, Real Madrid president Florentino Perez extinguished any hopes United fans may have had for a Ronaldo return. According to John Drayton of the Daily Mail, Perez has declared that Ronaldo will not only be remaining in Madrid this semester, but will remain in a Los Blancos kit for the rest of his career. 

With Real Madrid's president standing by his star striker, it's unlikely that they'll allow the Red Devils to pry him away, regardless of how much they might be willing to offer. 

For United, it has to be considered a big blow to the club's future. 

Under Sir Alex Ferguson's reign as manager, United was the most successful club in the Premier League. The club amassed 13 premier league titles, five FA Cups and 895 wins under his watch.

Now, they must show that they continue that kind of success under David Moyes as he transitions into the manager role this season. 

One reason for Ferguson's success was his ability to capture some of the most talented players in the world. He was able to secure high-profile transfers, such as Robin van Persie last season, who had scored 30 goals for Arsenal the previous season and appeared to be a long shot to wind up in Manchester. 

With Ferguson gone, the club now enters an era of uncertainty when it comes to drawing the best talent. Van Persie remains with the Red Devils, which gives them a star, but Wayne Rooney has been linked to a move all summer, even if Moyes recently told Fox Sports that he won't be selling the English international. 

Even if Rooney is forced to stay with the club, his wishes to start anew with another club aren't just going to disappear. Signing Ronaldo would have been the perfect scenario. They could have paved the way for his exit by replacing him with another phenomenal talent to pair with van Persie. 

Fortunately for Moyes, all of United's eggs weren't placed in the Ronaldo basket. There are still a few targets available—most notably Gareth Bale according to David Woods of the Daily Starthat the new manager could sign to keep United's status as a favorite to win the title year in and year out afloat. 

However, when you look at the fact that they won't be bringing on Ronaldo, and Cesc Fabregas appears to be out of the realm of possibility as well according to Sky Sports, the pressure is now on for Moyes to make a splash.