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Ronaldo to Madrid — Again

Real Madrid have Robinho, Reyes and Robben, off the top of my head, for wingers. They also have a fairly bloated squad, which again, isn’t very new. They just won their 31st league title. They are also among the richest clubs in the world.

So, surely they would have some class?

But no. Why would someone want to be normal and do boring stuff like, I don’t know, play by UEFA rules regarding legally approaching players? I mean why would someone want to do that when you have a battering ram that goes by the name of the Spanish media at your disposal? When it comes to a player linked with Real Madrid, ‘No’ is not an answer the press over there would accept. [I also have it on good authority that No in English translates to No in Spanish]

So they would set off to schedule an interview with the Portuguese winger, again. And what do you know: the wing wizard, for once, made a comment that lets doubts sink in. Mission accomplished, the Iberian blokes head back to the mainland, and a cloud of uncertainty envelops OT. Well done Antena 3. Kindly collect your Pullitzer from the cashier’s desk at the Megastore.

A little dramatic, but here’s the thing: Real Madrid, you are a bunch of disgraceful cunts! [I tried my best to look for other words from the slang vocabulary, with little success.]

OK, I’ve got that off my chest, so let me talk something sobering. Ronaldo has been quoted all over the press as saying that he might consider his future after the Champions’ League. Now while I know, deep in my heart, that Ronaldo will leave United at some point in the future it disappoints me to see him put his immediate future in doubt — most crucially ahead of the Champions’ League final. Why can’t he say ‘no’ just another time till the CL final gets over with and then talk whatever he wants?

I’ve had this nagging feeling that a player like Ronaldo, who is clearly driven by the need to succeed and win awards, — both personal and for the team; and he makes no pretences about it — could feel that he’s won enough, if we were to win Wednesday’s final, and decide to move on after staying at OT for one more season.

I would be very disappointed if he decided to jump ship immediately after winning Wednesday’s final.

Remember, my point is not debating whether Ronaldo was misquoted or not; everyone is talking about it, papers have carried actual quotes about what he said — so I see little point in debating what he actually said or in parsing his words out to overanalyse.

But where does this leave us? Considering the amount of wages he’s on and the length of his contract we are always in a strong position when it comes to negotiations. Personally, I am of the opinion that Ronaldo must stay for another season at United because, at the moment, we can’t replace him. Give us even £200m, we won’t be able to find a someone who fits our system and can readily settle in. Unless Madrid offer us £800m, which would almost instantly wipe off our debts, I don’t see any point selling him now.

The one season he stays, I hope, should help the likes of Nani and Anderson mature and provide us with options if Ron is to leave the club.

The influx of foreigners, for all its merits, does have a problem when it comes to club loyalty. You won’t have a Rooney or Rio linked endlessly to Spain or Italy. Nor would they go around professing their dream to play in Spain; which is why it is a part of the reason, other than money, for Flamini and Hleb moving clubs. Arsenal do have a bigger challenge in keeping their players. If there was a bigger case for having a British core of players, it is this. [And before you put your arguments to the contrary, remember, I said a core of British players — not for all eleven players to be Brit]

For the moment, though, let’s spend time dreaming up ways to bring about the ultimate ruin of Real Madrid. For a start let’s hope global warming causes the Bernabeu to become a cold wasteland littered with animal remains, with weather so extreme that Siberians would shudder.