The Dabigal Blog

Nani reveals Ronaldo would openly discuss leaving Man Utd before Madrid move

Cristiano Ronaldo made it no secret of his desire to leave Manchester United in order to join Real Madrid in 2009, according to former team-mate and compatriot Nani.

Ronaldo, who joined United from Sporting Lisbon in 2003, would openly discuss engineering a move away from the club with his colleagues after enjoying six trophy-laden years at Old Trafford.

Ronaldo during his unveiling as a Real Madrid player after his move from Manchester United

The Portuguese talisman would get his wish in 2009 when Real Madrid paid £80million for his services – a world-record fee at the time.

While Ronaldo would often talk about leaving the Red Devils, Nani admits that the speed of his departure actually took the United dressing room by surprise.

‘We would stay at the end of training to do competitions and they [Anderson and Ronaldo] were my team-mates, everyone has best friends or some they feel more comfortable with and they were my support,’ Nani told the UTD Podcast.

‘Some days he [Ronaldo] was telling us openly “I’m here six or seven years now, I think it’s enough for me” he said that a couple of times.

‘But it was always “I will see, I will see, I will see” but we never thought it [Real Madrid move] would happen so fast.

‘After we won the league in the second year he left, he produced a great season so we were still surprised.

Ronaldo celebrating his Champions league win for Real Madrid

The hefty price tag Real would pay for Ronaldo would later prove to be a bargain with the forward going on to become arguably the club’s best ever player.

Before leaving for Juventus in a £100m move in 2018, Ronaldo would leave a giant stamp on Real by becoming the club’s leading goalscorer while winning five Champions League trophies in that time.

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