Manchester United have accepted a world record transfer bid of £80m from Real Madrid for Cristiano Ronaldo.
The decision was taken after Cristiano Ronaldo again requested the move and after discussion with Jorge Mendes, the player’s agent. With Real Madrid making an unconditional offer of £80m (it remains to be seen if this will amount will be paid all upfront through the bank loan Real Madrid have secured to fund the Ronaldo transfer or it will be paid in stages), Manchester United have agreed to give Real Madrid permission to talk to the World Player of the Year.
United expect the transfer to be concluded by 30 June. Unlike last summer when Ronaldo made a public statement and United were forced to respond to it in public as well, this year has seen the two parties come to an agreement privately.
World Record Transfer Fee
The 80m transfer fee for Ronaldo means that Real Madrid have smashed the world record in transfer fees twice in the space of a week, with Kaka signing for a reported £56m from AC Milan earlier this month. The previous world record fee was £45.6m Real paid for Zinedine Zidane in 2001. The move also eclipses the Manchester United and English Premier League transfer records (£30m for Berbatov and £32 million for Robinho, both deals going through on the last day of last year’s summer transfer window.
Manchester United to move for Ribery?
Ronaldo’s departure could have a direct impact on another winger’s future, with Manchester United having talked to Bayern Munich last month about bringing in Frank Ribery in case Ronaldo was to depart to Madrid. United’s interest is now expected to intensify, although they will face competition from Chelsea and Barcelona. This time though, they can at least call upon a significant amount of the 80m transfer fee and could easily outspend their two rivals.
Apart from Cristiano Ronaldo there’s also the case of Carlos Tevez, who has seemingly made up his mind to leave Manchester United despite a late intervention by Alex Ferguson himself in a direct phone call to the player. Tevez’s first priority to stay in England, with Manchester City, Chelsea and Liverpool all reported to have shown interest in the forward.
Tevez set to leave Manchester United
Manchester United still have the option of first refusal on Carlos Tevez, although once their loan deal expires on 30th June Tevez will be a free agent and United will then be faced with the prospects of replacing two world class players. Manchester United have been linked with Benzema as a potential replacement for Tevez and if they can bring in Franck Ribery and Karim Benzema as replacements, the fans will be more than happy with the summer transfer window.
Now if only some one could fix Owen Hargreaves…