Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi almost lined up for the same team after he decided to leave Manchester United.
Former Real Madrid chairman, Florentino Perez, originally decided that the Portuguese icon wasn’t worth the $125 million Manchester United wanted for the player.
Sir Alex Ferguson and the Old Trafford outfit then went to Barcelona and offered Ronaldo to them for the same price. The Catalan side were prepared to actually pay the amount that Manchester United wanted, which would have seen Lionel Messi line-up alongside the winger.
Real Madrid’s former president, Ramon Calderon, made the revelation during an interview with Sky Sports [via Daily Mail]. Calderon declared that he was the one who started off transfer negotiations with United for the player. But when Perez replaced him he almost decided to call off the entire deal.
“When Florentino became president and came to the club, he wanted to break (negotiations). He thought it was very expensive. He knew he was a good player but thought he wasn’t worth that amount of money. That was problem he had at the beginning with Cristiano, who knew that.”
Calderon went on to explain that Ronaldo only wanted to move to Real Madrid though, and when he was offered to Barcelona, the forward declared that it was “Real Madrid or nothing.”
“They offered him to Barcelona among other clubs. Barcelona said ‘Okay, we are prepared to pay what you are asking.’ The important thing is that the player said, ‘No, Real Madrid or nothing.’ I’m very proud that he came, very proud what he’s doing. I was there at the moment the transfer could be done, anyone would have done the same.”
Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo has dismissed claims that he has ever had an offensive nickname for Lionel Messi. Yesterday it was reported that the Real Madrid forward calls his Argentinian rival a “motherf*****” when talking about the Barcelona player to his colleagues.
The Portuguese player took to Facebook to say that he has never uttered any harsh remarks regarding Messi, and that he has the “utmost respect” for him.
“This is absolutely false and I have assured my lawyer takes acton to sue those responsible. I have the utmost respect for all my professional colleagues, and Messi is obviously no exception.”
Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are widely regarded as the two best soccer players in the world at the moment. Their phenomenal goal-scoring records over the last decade is evidence that this is definitely the case.
— 101 Great Goals (@101greatgoals) October 17, 2014
[Image via Vision Noventa]