CR7 punts Man U to Ney­mar

The Star Early Edition - - SPORT -

CRIS­TIANO Ron­aldo, pic­tured, is be­lieved to have urged his Brazil­ian ri­val Ney­mar not to quit Barcelona this sum­mer, and only switch the Span­ish giants for Manch­ester United.

The Real Madrid icon has a close re­la­tion­ship with Ney­mar due to their shared com­mit­ments with spon­sor­ship giants Nike, and the Por­tuguese star is be­lieved to have sent a mes­sage to his coun­ter­part ad­vis­ing him on the sit­u­a­tion.

Ney­mar ap­pears to be on the verge of quit­ting Barcelona for French giants Paris Saint-Ger­main (PSG), who are happy to meet the in­cred­i­ble £197 mil­lion (R3.3bn) buy-out clause of the player.

In a deal which would see Ney­mar dis­pose United’s Paul Pogba to be­come com­fort­ably the most ex­pen­sive foot­baller in the his­tory of the game, PSG are also re­ported to be will­ing to pay the Brazil­ian star £500 000 per week.

But the reign­ing world Foot­baller of the Year Ron­aldo has cho­sen to give his ri­val a lit­tle bit of use­ful coun­sel, as re­ported by Span­ish me­dia out­let Diar­i­o­gol.

The ti­tle re­ported that Ron­aldo has told Ney­mar it would be a mis­take to leave the Cata­lan club, par­tic­u­larly to make a down­ward step to a smaller Euro­pean side. Ron­aldo is said to have out­lined only one pos­si­ble des­ti­na­tion for the Brazil­ian should he choose to turn his back on Barca ... Manch­ester United.

The Red Devils are one of the few clubs in the world who match Barcelona in terms of stature, global fan base and sheer spend­ing power.

Ron­aldo spent a hugely suc­cess­ful six years in Manch­ester, from 2003 to 2009, de­vel­op­ing into one of the finest play­ers in world foot­ball un­der the guid­ance of the revered Sir Alex Fer­gu­son who has since re­tired. The Ney­mar saga looks set to serve up plenty more twists and turns be­fore the trans­fer win­dow slams shut, but one man who is con­vinced the mer­cu­rial for­ward will stay at the Camp Nou is his team­mate, de­fender Ger­ard Pique.

The Cata­lan star took to so­cial me­dia on Sun­day night to post an im­age of him­self with Ney­mar, along with the cap­tion Se queda – roughly trans­lat­ing to ‘He stays.’ Con­tra­dic­tory re­ports in the French and Span­ish press had sug­gested both that the deal is done, and that the Brazil­ian has de­cided to stay at Barca.

But Pique’s in­ter­ven­tion is the clear­est sug­ges­tion yet that the Brazil­ians striker may have called off what would have been a world record move. – Daily Mail and The In­de­pen­dent

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