Manchester United and Cristiano Ronaldo have officially split the company, with the main issue now being who will be the Portuguese international’s next club.
Given his past £500,000-a-week salaries at United and his recent attitude issues with the Red Devils under Erik Ten Hag, few clubs will be interested in signing Ronaldo at 37. However, some clubs may still be interested in signing one of football’s top talents for the next year or two.
Indeed, Ronaldo’s next club and move will be a blockbuster move in the sport. And whilst the attacker’s involvement in the 2022 FIFA World Cup might take center stage, for now, the veteran’s future will now become a huge talking point in the coming weeks.
With that in mind, here are five clubs who could make a move for Ronaldo as the former United and Juventus superstar looks to sign for what could be his final team in his staggering and historic playing career.
If there is one Premier League club that is careless enough to sign Ronaldo despite his nightmare season with United, it is Chelsea, according to the Athletic, with new Blues owner Todd Boehly being desperate to sign Ronaldo in the summer despite Thomas Tuchel’s protests.
Whilst Chelsea now has transfer experts in place to steer the west London side back to the top under Graham Potter, Boehly could once again look to sign Ronaldo despite the obvious red flags surrounding the Portuguese superstar, and it wouldn’t be too shocking to see the Premier League giants move for the 37-year-old.
MLS appears to be one of Ronaldo’s most likely destinations in 2023, and with United legend David Beckham owning a club in Inter Miami, the Florida-based franchise appears to be an obvious choice for Ronaldo when deciding on his next club.
Newcastle United’s increased fortune makes the Premier League‘s third-placed club an obvious option to recruit Ronaldo. However, given Eddie Howe’s recent string of prudent signings, a move for the 37-year-old appears as implausible as it sounds.
However, while Newcastle has made good progress under Howe, the Magpies have yet to add a major superstar. And, while Ronaldo may not match the club’s long-term goal, the opportunity to sign the former Manchester United megastar may be too tempting to pass up.
Ronaldo’s tenure at Real Madrid will go down as one of the best club careers in football history, with the attacker discovering his goalscoring proficiency in Spain and winning every piece of silverware possible for Los Blancos. And the forward leaving United could open up a possible return to La Liga.
With Karim Benzema out injured, Ronaldo and Real Madrid may be persuaded to agree on a reunion four years after he left the Spanish city. With Eden Hazard due to leave in January, the Portuguese star might be given his preferred number 7 shirt to sweeten the bargain.
Although a return to Real Madrid is the most likely scenario for Ronaldo in the coming weeks, many football fans believe that the attacker returning to Sporting Lisbon, where it all began, would be nothing short of a beautiful manner for the forward to complete his footballing career.
Sporting, a regular in Europe, might pull off a coup by signing Ronaldo after the World Cup if the striker wants to return to Portugal. While the lack of UEFA Champions League football may be an issue, the Lisbon giants are well-positioned to win the hunt for their former youth star in 2023.