‘The only person who wanted to hire him was Sir Alex Ferguson’: Cristiano Ronaldo chose Arsenal in Manchester United in 2003 because every other club wanted to lend him back to Sporting Lisbon, according to his agent Jorge Mendes
- Jorge Mendes has revealed how Manchester United signed Cristiano Ronaldo
- United wanted Ronaldo to play, while Arsenal wanted to lend him
- Mendes says Sir Alex Ferguson was hugely influential in signing the Sporting starlet
Cristiano Ronaldo chose to join Manchester United in 2003 because any other club interested in drawing the winger wanted to lend him back to Sporting Lisbon, his agent Jorge Mendes has revealed.
Ronaldo, then 18, was in high demand, with Arsenal among the other teams trying to sign him.
Mendes revealed that then-United United-boss Sir Alex Ferguson had a huge influence in determining Ronaldo’s destination, as he wanted the starlet to play immediately.
Manchester United won the race for Cristiano Ronaldo because they wanted to play it immediately
Sir Alex Ferguson in the picture with new signings Kleberson and Ronaldo in August 2003
Mendes said The sun: “I have always maintained that the coach is ultimately the most important part of every transfer.
Cristiano Ronaldo is a perfect answer.
“Every club wanted him, but they all wanted him to loan Sporting for another season.
“The only person who seemed to hire him immediately was Sir Alex Ferguson, and I had no doubt at the time that this was the best solution.
Ferguson was determined to sign Ronaldo permanently after impressing United
“My decision, without thinking about it, was that Manchester United was the ideal club for him.”
Ferguson was determined to sign Ronaldo after his impressive appearance for Sporting in a friendly against United in August 2003.
The deal was finalized and Ronaldo was prominent during his first season with United as he made 40 appearances and scored six goals.
United certainly proved to be the right destination for Ronaldo, who scored a total of 29 goals in 292 games for the club, winning a wide variety of trophies.
After joining £ 12.24 million, Ronaldo United left Real Madrid for £ 80 million in 2009 – a world record transfer fee at the time.