Which Serie A sides were offered Cristiano Ronaldo?
The Portuguese star was offered to the Milan giants by Jorge Mendes but the Manchester United player’s salary put the Serie A clubs off.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s desire to leave Manchester United this summer is no secret and Serie A emerged as a possible destination in recent days. According to Il Corriere dello Sport, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner was offered to Inter and AC Milan by his agent, Jorge Mendes, but both clubs decided to pass on the opportunity due to the financial implications of the Portugal captain’s salary demands.
Il Corriere reported that Ronaldo’s salary would have been set at €45 million before tax, but that the former Real Madrid and Juventus forward would not provide Inter and Milan with the option of availing themselves of the advantages of the Growth Decree, which was introduced in 2019 to help Serie A sides sign big-name players from overseas by covering up to 50% of their salary through tax breaks - a scheme that is now under review. As such, the two Milan clubs elected not to pursue the possibility of adding Ronaldo to their ranks.
Ronaldo knows Serie A first-hand after three seasons at Juventus, where he made 134 appearances in which he scored 101 goals and provided 22 assists. He lifted two Serie A titles, an Italian Cup and two Super Cups during his spell in Turin.
United’s poor Premier League start
Ronaldo made it clear he wanted to leave Manchester United for the second time ahead of the 2022-23 season, as reported by AS and later confirmed by the English press. Bayern, Chelsea, Napoli and even Barcelona were among the clubs credited with an interest in the Portuguese, but at one point Atlético appeared to be in pole position to sign him. Ronaldo’s admiration for Diego Simeone and the fact the Argentinean coach looked favorably on his arrival brought a deal closer.
However, a backlash from Atlético fans and comments from Enrique Cerezo - ”It is almost impossible for Cristiano to come to Atlético. I don’t know who has invented that story” - made a move to the Metropolitano unlikely. Now it seems that Ronaldo will have to resign himself to remaining a United player where he will watch the Champions League on TV and will instead compete in the Europa League, a title he has not won and to which the Red Devils will commit all resources as a way back into the European elite next season: Erik ten Hag’s side are currently bottom of the Premier League after two games against Brighton and Brentford, which has not invited optimism that United will qualify through their league position.