The return of Cristiano Ronaldo to Manchester United is a fairytale that looks set for an abrupt end this summer after the Portuguese great has fallen well out of favor with the Red Devils in the wake of the arrival of new manager Erik ten Hag.
Ronaldo was already left frustrated after a 2021-22 Premier League campaign that saw United finish seventh after both Ole Gunnar Solskjær and Ralf Rangnick failed to keep the club in the hunt for Champions League football.
That failure already set Ronaldo on the warpath this summer before Ten Hag’s arrival with long-standing questions about his future arising early on, but the manner in which he and the Dutch tactician have failed to get on has exacerbated matters to the point where now he has been given permission to leave Old Trafford this summer on the condition that he finds a club interested in his services.
Per 90min, one such club is Sporting CP after the Portuguese giants have contacted Ronaldo and his camp over the possibility to manufacture a ticket back home for the 37-year-old forward.
Ronaldo was already considering the possibility of a return to Sporting, the club where he starred as a youngster before being snapped up by Sir Alex Ferguson, and there may be no better time for him to enjoy the twilight of his career at the club that helped launch him to greatness.
Most importantly, Sporting is capable of offering Ronaldo the chance to play Champions League football this season after Rúben Amorim’s Leões finished runner-up in Liga Portugal last season and are set to take part in this season’s group stage at the very least.
Should Ronaldo get the departure he desires, it would leave United even more short of forward options than they already are after Anthony Martial’s hamstring injury and Marcus Rashford linked with a possible move to Paris Saint-Germain.