Cristiano Ronaldo Returns To Manchester United In A Red Reunion
Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo will join Manchester United for a second stint as he heads into the twilight of his illustrious career.
"Manchester United is delighted to confirm that the club has reached agreement with Juventus for the transfer of Cristiano Ronaldo, subject to agreement of personal terms, visa and medical, " an official statement by the club said. He is expected to sign a 2-year deal following his medical.
The 36-year-old will return to Old Trafford after having left in 2009 for Real Madrid. Ronaldo, a five-time Ballon d'Or winner, has won over 30 major trophies in his career across England, Spain and Italy. In his first spell for Manchester United he had scored 118 goals in 292 games.
"Everyone at the club looks forward to welcoming Cristiano back to Manchester," the statement further added.
According to The Athletic UK, the transfer fee agreed is understood to be 15 million euros with another 8 million euros in add-ons.
Besides footballing talent, Ronaldo brings significant commercial value for one of the biggest clubs in the world. He is one of the most marketable faces in sport and has the world's biggest Instagram follower count. His arrival at Juventus in 2018 had spurred more than half million shirt sales within 24 hours. His signing caused Juventus shares to soar about 150% in the first year itself.
The euphoria is no different among investors of Manchester United. Shares rose 10.8% intraday on the NYSE soon after his signing. At the time of publishing, the stock was up 6.83% at $18.45 apiece.
That said, Ronaldo also comes along with a huge wage bill. He is the third-highest paid athlete in the world behind Connor McGregor and Lionel Messi, according to Forbes. His previous four-year contract with Juventus saw him earn an average of $64 million a year.