CRISTIANO Ronaldo WILL be a Real Madrid player next season.
After 23 chaotic days of speculation about the Portuguese superstar’s immediate future, AS in Spain has reported Ronaldo, “advised by his representatives”, has “decided to stay”.
CR7 is said to be “excited” by the transfer activity Real are embarking on, including trying to lure Monaco ace Kylian Mbappe.
Ronaldo has also been elevated to Real’s third captain – behind Sergio Ramos and Marcelo – following Pepe’s departure from the club, a move which strengthens his ties to the Spanish capital.
The football world was rocked by A Bola’s earlier reports that “Cristiano wants to abandon Spain” as a result of the club’s failure to help with his tax evasion scandal.
President Florentino Perez came out on Spanish radio, saying: “Right now, Cristiano is a Real Madrid player and something very strange would have to happen for him not to be, and I am not [even] contemplating that.”
Those comments did nothing to kill off talks of a move away from the Santiago Bernabeu.
Manchester United were on ‘red alert’ and OK Diario claimed just last week that Ronaldo had held “a secret meeting” with PSG owner Nasser Al-Khelaifi over a potential world-record move.
Instead, both those links are dead in the water – for at least 12 months.
That’s according to Diario Gol, who report CR7 will spend just one more season with Real Madrid before seeking a new challenge.
There are three reasons behind Ronaldo wanting a ninth and final season with Real:
• It will boost his profile further
• Real Madrid will offer Ronaldo a better chance of winning the Ballon d’Or again
• La Liga acts as better preparation for the 2018 World Cup
Another Ballon d’Or will take him beyond rival Lionel Messi, while a strong showing at the World Cup will put Ronaldo in pole position for the 2018 Ballon d’Or crown.
But beyond that, the 32-year-old is looking at the possibility of a move to Paris, while there is interest from the USA and China.