Cristiano Ronaldo Reportedly Considered AC Milan Move Before Joining Juventus

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistAugust 2, 2019

NANJING, CHINA - JULY 24:  Cristiano Ronaldo of Juventus looks on during the International Champions Cup match between Juventus and FC Internazionale at the Nanjing Olympic Center Stadium on July 24, 2019 in Nanjing, China.  (Photo by Lintao Zhang/International Champions Cup/Getty Images)
Lintao Zhang/International Champions Cup/Getty Images

Former AC Milan chief executive officer Marco Fassone has said Cristiano Ronaldo was open to joining the Rossoneri before he completed a €112 million transfer to Juventus last summer.

Ronaldo's arrival from Real Madrid strengthened Juventus' grip on Serie A as they ran to an eighth successive Scudetto last season. However, Fassone told Sportitalia (h/t Goal's Sacha Pisani) the Portuguese also considered Milan.

The former club chief said: "The president wanted Cristiano Ronaldo, but the figures told us this was inadvisable. Ronaldo was open to evaluating the opportunity, as Milan are a famous club and there was enthusiasm around us. However, we never went beyond some internal calculations and seeing if he was potentially open to it."

Ex-Milan sporting director Massimiliano Mirabelli said Ronaldo was close to joining the Rossoneri prior to completing his Juventus transfer, per Pisani's report.

However, the former ownership—led by Chinese businessman Li Yonghong—blocked the move just before hedge fund Elliott Management took control of the club in July 2018.

Ronaldo, 34, enjoyed a successful first campaign in Italy and scored a hat-trick against old rivals Atletico Madrid to secure a famous comeback in the UEFA Champions League round of 16:

Football on BT Sport @btsportfootball

One year ago today... Juventus announced the signing of Cristiano Ronaldo from Real Madrid 7️⃣ ⚽️ 28 goals 🅰️ 10 assists 🏆 1 Serie A title Not a bad first season... Be you just know he wants more. https://t.co/0lxSgO2MSW

Milan came fifth in Serie A to register their best league finish since 2013, and form noticeably improved after striker Krzysztof Piatek joined the club from Genoa in January.

Elliott Management's takeover of Milan is a sign of the financial troubles they've experienced in recent years. Ronaldo's arrival could have given their revenue a welcome boost, though Juventus benefit from being a publicly traded entity in this scenario:

B/R Football @brfootball

Since Ronaldo joined Juventus, the club has become worth more than €1bn. And he hasn't even scored a goal yet 💰 https://t.co/ABmXx4UBfM

Economist Michelangelo Verna told Sky Sport Italia (h/t Football Italia) in July 2018 that Juventus would make €50 million per year in increased revenue based on the player's €30 million-per-year net salary.

Business Insider's Alan Dawson wrote last year that the Bianconeri sold €60 million worth of Ronaldo jerseys in the first 24 hours following his move from Madrid. They can expect his name to sell well annually, though not nearly as successfully as it did immediately after his transfer.

Milan once boasted the talents of Brazilian legends Ronaldo (2007-08) and Ronaldinho (2008-11), but their attempts to sign the third iconic namesake fell short.