Rumour Has It: Man Utd's Ronaldo may make January move as he reconsiders Saudi Arabia offer

By Sports Desk September 13, 2022

Cristiano Ronaldo's future at Manchester United was a major source of speculation during the transfer window.

The 37-year-old Portuguese forward reportedly wanted to leave United in order to fulfil his desire to play Champions League football and challenge for trophies in the top leagues.

However, Ronaldo was unable to secure a move, with the likes of Napoli, Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid publicly distancing themselves from him following links, which may have led to another option being considered down the line.

TOP STORY – RONALDO TO RE-VISIT SAUDI OFFER IN JANUARY

Cristiano Ronaldo is reconsidering a lucrative offer from an unnamed Saudi Arabian club and could move in January, according to The Mirror.

Ronaldo had a stunning £211million Saudi offer during the transfer window but declined the move as he remained focused on playing in Europe.

But he will re-visit that in January after failing to secure a move, as he comes to the realisation his desire to play Champions League football and win trophies in top leagues may be fading.

Ronaldo has also struggled for game time this season at United under new boss Erik ten Hag, starting just one out of six Premier League games so far.

ROUND-UP

– L'Equipe claims that Kylian Mbappe's Paris Saint-Germain contract expires in 2024 and not 2025, as that final year is at the sole discretion of the player. Mbappe was close to joining Real Madrid last term before signing a lucrative extension with PSG.

Inter are eager to work on a contract extension for defender Milan Skriniar who is out of contract at the end of this season, reports L'Interista. The Slovakian defender was pursued by PSG during the last transfer window, while Tottenham were also credited with an interest.

Arsenal will look to loan out 19-year-old Brazilian winger Marquinhos in order to gain first-team experience and game time, reports FourFourTwo. As a result, the Gunners will aim to bring in a short-term replacement in January.

N'Golo Kante has declined a new two-year deal with Chelsea and is out of contract in 2023, claims The Athletic.

– UOL says  Brighton and Hove Albion are interested in hiring Palmeiras boss Abel Ferreira to replace Graham Potter, who exited for Chelsea last week.

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  • 'He kept us in the Premier League' - Bolt sad to see Ronaldo leave Man Utd 'He kept us in the Premier League' - Bolt sad to see Ronaldo leave Man Utd

    Usain Bolt says he is disappointed to see Cristiano Ronaldo exit Manchester United, crediting the forward for keeping the club in the Premier League last season.

    The Portugal captain departed Old Trafford by mutual consent last month following an explosive interview that saw him roundly criticise the club, manager Erik ten Hag and owners, the Glazer family.

    It came after a difficult first season back following his return to the club from Juventus, in which the veteran striker looked ill at ease under interim boss Ralf Rangnick.

    Now Bolt, an eight-time Olympic gold medal winner and United supporter, says he is disheartened by the star's exit, but stresses he understands his reasons.

    "It's sad to see him go," said Bolt of Ronaldo. "He played such an important role for us last season. He kept us in the Premier League last season. Because many games he was the one he scored, kept giving us points.

    "So it is sad to see him go, but I understand by listening to his interview there is a lot going on that a lot of us don't know.

    "I wish him all the best on his journey because I am a massive Cristiano Ronaldo fan. So it is sad to see him gone."

    The exit of Ronaldo has prefaced a potential sale by the Glazer family, who have long been the target of ire from the club's fanbase, and Bolt adds that it has been something supporters have been keen to see for a while.

    "For me, it has been [a] long time [coming] for the fans," he added. "[They] have spoken about this for years. Since Alex Ferguson [left], the club has been up and down,

    "It surprised me as a supporter to know that the club hasn't really moved on technology-wise to try to improve and to help the players to move forward.

    "So, to get new owners, hopefully they'll come in and develop the club in a way that is necessary."

  • 'You only get one career' – Rice says England experience has whetted Champions League appetite 'You only get one career' – Rice says England experience has whetted Champions League appetite

    Declan Rice says performing on the biggest stage for England has only increased his desire to feature in the Champions League in the future, declaring: "you only get one career".

    Rice has started all three of England's games at the World Cup in Qatar, helping the Three Lions top their group at the tournament for the first time since the 2006 edition in Germany. 

    The West Ham midfielder has been linked with the likes of Manchester United and Chelsea in recent years, and his solid international displays will have done little to reduce interest in his services. 

    Asked whether his desire to reach the top of the club game had increased as a result of his time with Gareth Southgate's side, Rice said: "Yeah, 100 per cent. 

    "For the last two or three years I have been saying that. I have been playing consistently well for [my] club and I feel like I really want to keep pushing.

    "I see my friends here who are playing in the Champions League and for big trophies. 

    "You only get one career, and at the end of your career you want to look back at what you have won and the biggest games you have played in. I am really ambitious."

    Rice has made seven interceptions at the World Cup so far – at least five more than any of his England team-mates, while only Jude Bellingham (18) and Luke Shaw (17) have recovered possession more often than he has for the Three Lions (14).

    England take on Senegal for a place in the quarter-finals on Sunday, having progressed through five of their previous seven last-16 ties at the World Cup (failing to do so against Argentina in 1998 and Germany in 2010).

  • Santos has trust in every Portugal player as he weighs up changes for final group game Santos has trust in every Portugal player as he weighs up changes for final group game

    Fernando Santos has no issues with rotating his squad in Portugal's final Group H match against South Korea.

    Portugal's place in the knockout stage of the World Cup was assured when they beat Uruguay 2-0 on Monday.

    While top spot in the group is not secured ahead of the meeting with Korea at Education City Stadium, Portugal's goal difference (+3) puts them in prime position to go through as winners.

    Santos suggested he will make the changes, but he believes utilising more of his 26-man squad is the only way his team will develop.

    "We must continue to grow. To me the most important thing is the confidence I have in all of my players, I trust all of them," he said at a press conference on Thursday.

    "We have at least three who will definitely play. As for the others, we will have to see.

    "The players are in great shape, but we have begun to see fatigue, which can lead to injuries. We have another player who is somewhat fatigued and we'll have to look into that, but we also have to deal with the bookings we have got. 

    "I'm very confident about who I'll be putting on the pitch. We have to understand for every match we have to make these decisions and I have to play the team I am most confident in regardless of previous results."

     

    Asked if Ronaldo, who thought he had scored a 119th international goal when he tried to nudge home Bruno Fernandes' cross against Uruguay, would feature, Santos replied: "If he is well enough physically, he will be playing.

    "I don't know if the chance is even 50-50, it depends on our training session. It depends if nothing happens and he will be able to play."

    Winning the group would mean Portugal are likely to avoid a last-16 tie with Brazil, who look set to claim first place in Group G.

    Santos is less concerned about the prospect of facing Brazil than he is about having fewer days in-between matches, however, as winning the group would mean Portugal play their last-16 match on Tuesday rather than Monday.

    "At this stage, in terms of not running into Brazil – we're not really concerned about that at this point," Santos explained.

    "When you come to a World Cup you strive to achieve something very important, so it's much more important to have at least 24 hours for the players to recover.

    "I hope they will all be ready to play but if it's difficult to be in the best shape after four days, then after three days it's even more difficult."

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