Cristiano Ronaldo 'No Longer Has Any Intention to Play for Juventus,' Says AllegriAugust 27, 2021
Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri said Friday that superstar forward Cristiano Ronaldo has told him of his intention to leave the club before the summer transfer window closes Tuesday.
"Yesterday, Cristiano told me that he no longer has any intention to play for Juventus," Allegri told reporters. "For this reason, he will not be called up for tomorrow's game."
Juve are scheduled to host Empoli on Saturday after opening the 2021-22 Serie A campaign with a 2-2 away draw against Udinese. Ronaldo entered as a substitute in that match, and it looks to have been his final appearance for the club.
Although Ronaldo has been heavily linked with a transfer to Premier League champions Manchester City, ESPN's Andrew Cesare Richardson reported Friday that Juventus hadn't received an "official offer from any club."
The 36-year-old joined Juve in July 2018 after a nine years at Real Madrid. He's also played for Sporting CP and Manchester United during a career that's highlighted by five UEFA Champions League triumphs and five Ballons d'Or.
Ronaldo hasn't commented on his preferred transfer destination, but he made an Instagram post earlier in August to strike back against the "frivolous way" rumors are handled.
"I'm breaking my silence now to say that I can't allow people to keep playing around with my name," Ronaldo wrote. "I remain focused on my career and in my work, committed and prepared for all the challenges that I have to face. Everything else? Everything else is just talk."
Of course, leaving his future up in the air until the final days of the transfer window creates a breeding ground for speculation.
No major competition for City has emerged, which could create leverage issues for Juventus with Ronaldo having informed the club of his intention to leave.
Stuart Brennan of the Manchester Evening News reported the Sky Blues "hold most of the aces" in the talks and could land the forward for between £17million and £25million ($23 million to $34 million).
It would be a major addition for City in their quest to win the Champions League for the first time. Ronaldo is still an attacking force, scoring 33 goals in 39 appearances between Serie A and the UCL last term.
He would join a forward group that also includes Riyad Mahrez, Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus and Ferran Torres if he ends up at Etihad Stadium.
A Ronaldo transfer would also cap a remarkable transfer window that also saw Lionel Messi, Jack Grealish, Romelu Lukaku and Sergio Ramos among the high-profile players on the move.
Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe could also join the list before Tuesday, with Fabrizio Romano and Ed Aarons of The Guardian reporting Real Madrid have bid $200 million for the forward.