Cristiano Ronaldo Reportedly Requests Angel Di Maria Stays at Real Madrid
Winger Angel di Maria has been one of Real Madrid's best supporting players for the past few seasons. That fact clearly isn't lost on Los Blancos superstar Cristiano Ronaldo as he has reportedly expressed a desire for di Maria to remain at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
According to Tancredi Palmeri of CNN, di Maria claims that Ronaldo went to bat for him and asked Madrid president Florentino Perez to keep him in the fold.
Di Maria: "Cristiano Ronaldo has asked personally to Florentino Perez to keep me at Real Madrid"— Tancredi Palmeri (@tancredipalmeri) August 14, 2013
Perhaps this shouldn't come as a major shock as di Maria is one of Ronaldo's most offensively-gifted teammates. Ronaldo has 201 goals in 199 appearances for Madrid, and di Maria has set up many of them. In fact, in three seasons with the Spanish side, the Argentine has dished out an impressive 53 assists to go along with 25 goals.
According to Dermot Corrigan of ESPN FC, di Maria is appreciative of Ronaldo's efforts as he has no desire to leave Madrid currently.
I found out from elsewhere, not directly from him, that he had done that for me, the 25-year-old said. I am very happy that a player like that -- a reference at Madrid -- supports me, asks for me not to leave, as people were saying that it might happen. That is very important.
Corrigan believes that talk regarding a potential di Maria transfer stemmed from the club's interest in Tottenham star Gareth Bale. Los Blancos have been rumored to be offering a record transfer fee in order to land Bale, which is something that has conceivably irked Ronaldo.
What is Ronaldo's biggest motivation for talking up di Maria?
Not only would such a deal exceed the record price that Madrid paid for Ronaldo in 2009, but Bale's presence could potentially overshadow Ronaldo to a certain degree. While di Maria is a supremely-talented player, Ronaldo will never have to worry about him stealing headlines.
Regardless of his motivations, Ronaldo showed a great deal of leadership in speaking up on his friend and teammate's behalf. If di Maria plays for Madrid this season, it appears as though Ronaldo will have had a big hand in making it happen.
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