“Welcome home, Ronny. CR7 returns to Old Trafford.
Cristiano Ronaldo can look forward to a few hugs and certainly standing ovations and applause. The reason is obvious: the Portuguese superstar returns to Manchester in Juventus Turin kit – and at the same time to holy Old Trafford, United’s home. The place where CR7’s immensely successful career really began…
Cristiano Ronaldo has just added another brand to his memorial: after 86 Premier League goals for Manchester United (2003 to 2009), 311 La Liga goals for Real Madrid (2009 to 2018) and five Serie A goals for his new club Juventus Turin, CR7 is now the first player ever to score 400 goals in Europe’s top five leagues.
It’s the perfect setting for his return to his old home this Tuesday (9 p.m., LIVE! in stream at DAZN), when the Portuguese returns to his old home on his favourite of all stages (120 goals in 154 CL appearances) and competes with Juve against the current ManUnited.
CR7 about Ferguson: “He was like my father in sports”
Cristiano Ronaldo once matured into a world footballer in the Red Devils’ jersey – English champion 2007, 2008, 2009; FA Cup winner 2004; Champions League champion 2008; and his 31 goals in 2007/08 are unrivalled.
On his return to Old Trafford, he now wants to prove his continuing international class not only to former coach José Mourinho. The 33-year-old Portuguese is eagerly awaited after seeing a red card in his first Champions League match for Juventus Turin against Valencia after an assault. “CR7 is ready for his return,” wrote Tuttosport.
The 2016 European Champion played 292 times for United between 2003 and 2009, scoring a proud 118 goals. From an inexperienced 18-year-old, he has matured into the “planet’s best footballer”, writes England’s record champion himself on his website and already dedicates a place to CR7 in the virtual hall of fame. United’s ex-coach Sir Alex Ferguson was mainly responsible for his promotion. “He was like my father in sports. I have to thank him for everything,” said the Portuguese.
I have no words for how it feels. The fans have made me shy.
Cristiano Ronaldo on his first return
The offensive man already knows from his own unique experience what he can expect for the English fans, “It was incredible,” Cristiano Ronaldo once said when he returned to Manchester in 2013 with former Real Madrid for the first and only time so far. “I have no words for how it feels. The fans made me shy,” he said. At the time, the attacking star won 2-1 with the royals – and he scored the winning goal himself – while Juve’s third win should be the next step towards the round of sixteen. “Welcome home, Ronny” and “Viva Ronaldo” were also on the posters at the time.
The TV cameras will certainly capture the meeting of Man United coach José Mourinho and Cristiano Ronaldo, who once worked with “The Special One” at Real, on this glamorous evening. The coach said of his compatriot and former protégé on Monday: “Cristiano is still a top player. I think he likes coming back to Manchester. Anyway, when he was here with Real, he enjoyed it.” Mourinho also knows what CR7 want – or need – to achieve with their new club Juve? “He has a job to do with his new club. Juventus took Cristiano to win the Champions League. After all, they won the championship without him.”
There remains one more thing. According to “Gazzetta dello Sport”, “Mou” and CR7, who has recently won the premier league three times in a row, were once “in a bad way apart” after spending three years together in Madrid. On the stage of the Theater der Träume, the two illustrious personalities of modern Portugal must shake hands. The two alpha animals were said not to have spoken to each other more than necessary and to have repeatedly held different views. Mourinho nevertheless praised his former protégé once again: “He is one of the best players of all time, nobody can say anything else. That’s very simple.”