Before joining Manchester United, Cristiano Ronaldo was offered by to Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, and Manchester United, according to various reports and leaks. But most sensationally, the latest rumors say he was at one point offered to FC Barcelona by his agent, Jorge Mendes.
This might seem less shocking if we remember he was very close to joining Manchester City, the rivals of his former club, Manchester United.
Still, it would’ve been very hard to pull off financially if for no other reason. The Catalans let Lionel Messi go due to salary cap issues. This rumor joins a long list of rumors about Ronaldo’s desperation to leave his “new challenge” in Serie A behind this summer.
The report states Barcelona were not interested, in the same way that PSG and Real Madrid turned Ronaldo’s offer to join them down. That ultimately left two suitors - United and City. According to various reports, both made an attempt to get the striker. However, United were more decisive in offering more money and were able to reunite with the Portuguese star.
To what degree City made a push for Ronaldo is under debate, Pep Guardiola, City’s manager, publicly stated that he did not think his club would have signed Ronaldo even if United had not snapped him up.
What seems to be clear though, is that both Manchester clubs were interested and Ronaldo strongly considered both options before opting for a reunion.
Ronaldo would end up at “either Manchester United or Manchester City, both are fighting to sign me and it’s going to be closed,” he said in leaked audio.