The Portugal star has returned to Manchester United after nearly joining the club’s city rivals
Cristiano Ronaldo was never going to sign for Manchester City this summer, according to Manchester United head coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes had talks with a number of clubs, and United’s city rivals were favourites to land the Portugal international until United started negotiations to bring him back to Old Trafford.
United fans were upset about the prospect of Ronaldo joining City, but Solskjaer has refuted the suggestion that it was ever a possibility.
What was said?
With Ronaldo getting ready to make his second debut for United in their match against Newcastle on Saturday, the Norwegian was asked if the prospect of the forward joining City had been “frightening.”
“I don’t think there was any prospect of that,” he replied.
Pushed on whether Ronaldo joining City was ever a possibility, he said: “I don’t think so.”
What was the situation?
Mendes had conversations with various clubs across the summer as his client looked to secure a move away from Juventus.
It is understood that Harry Kane was City’s top striker target this summer. When the Tottenham man declared his intention to stay at his club, City then explored the possibility of signing Ronaldo.
However, with talks ongoing United swooped in and Sir Alex Ferguson got in touch with his former player about returning to Old Trafford. Within a short few hours, a deal had been agreed for him to return.
Will Ronaldo take penalties at Man Utd?
Solskjaer has plenty to work out now Ronaldo has signed again, with one of his biggest decisions over penalty duties. Bruno Fernandes is United’s go-to for spot kicks but with Ronaldo first choice for Portugal, will Fernandes have to give them up for his team-mate?
“I knew that question was going to come and of course I’ve had a chat with the two of them,” Solskjaer said. “We’ve got two players there that I’d trust with my life to put a penalty away and that’s a great position to be in.
“They’ll know via the conversations we’ve had and the conversations we’ll have before the games how we’re going to solve this. It’s going to be my decision what’ll happen. The two of them will keep on doing what they do when they’re asked to take the penalties.”
Pushed on whether or not they could share the duties he replied: “I’ve got Cristiano, Bruno, Marcus [Rashford], I’ve got players I trust to score every time they step up to take a penalty.
“I’ve had this conversation, of course, and they know my position on it. They know that I decide who is going to shoot the penalty if we get one.
“That’s not going to cause an issue. We’re here to win together. It’s not about my numbers or your numbers. It’s about us as a team and the decision is going to be mine.”