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Manchester City are in talks with Cristiano Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes over a sensational return to the Premier League.
City are open to taking the Portugal superstar on a free transfer if Juventus drop their £25million demand and Ronaldo accepts a cut to his £500,000-a-week salary.
Thursday night’s Champions League draw paired City with Paris Saint-Germain in Group A, setting up the mouth-watering prospect of Ronaldo clashing with his old rival Lionel Messi at the Etihad.
Cristiano Ronaldo has agreed personal terms with Manchester City, according to reports
Ronaldo’s agent, Jorge Mendes (centre), held talks with Juventus as the player pushes to leave
Juventus want to move Ronaldo off their wage bill, and the five-time Ballon d’Or winner is keen to leave Turin where he has 10 months left on his contract.
City were offered the Manchester United legend last week, but the spectacular deal only became a possibility once they abandoned their pursuit of Tottenham’s Harry Kane.
They have not committed themselves to a move for Ronaldo, who will be 37 in February, and it is understood there is no agreement yet with either Juventus or the player.
Portuguese outlets are suggesting he has also spoken with City boss Pep Guardiola (left)
Manager Pep Guardiola is prepared for the transfer window to close with no additions to his current squad after the City boss broke the British record to sign Jack Grealish for £100m.
Ronaldo’s representative Mendes held talks with Juve and City on Thursday before it was reported that he had flown to Paris.
Reports in the Portugal international’s home country suggested Ronaldo has already spoken with Guardiola, he’d agreed personal terms with City and that the Italian side are now in talks with the Premier League champions about letting him leave three years after he joined.
Wantaway superstar Ronaldo had asked Juventus to leave him on the bench against Udinese
PSG could yet emerge as an option for Ronaldo — playing alongside Messi and Neymar — if the French club sell Kylian Mbappe, after he was the subject of an improved £155m bid from Real Madrid on Thursday.
But Mendes is struggling to find any other European clubs able to afford his client, now the season has started and most squads are in place.
United have been consistently linked with a move for Ronaldo since he left Old Trafford for Real in 2009.
However, they have spent £116m on Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane this summer and given Edinson Cavani a new contract.
Ronaldo has just one more year left on his contract but Juventus want to collect a fee for him
Ronaldo’s former United team-mate Wayne Rooney cast doubt over the possibility of him tarnishing his legacy by signing for their neighbours.
‘I can’t see it happening with someone of Cristiano’s stature,’ Rooney said on Thursday. ‘Cristiano has got a big legacy at Manchester United and I don’t think he’ll move somewhere for financial reasons.
‘On the other hand, it’s football. Anything can happen. It has happened before with legends from Manchester United. Peter Schmeichel went to City, Andy Cole went to City, Mark Hughes managed City.’
City beat PSG in last season’s Champions League semi-finals and they were paired together in Thursday night’s draw in Istanbul. RB Leipzig and Club Bruges are also in a tough Group A.
Ronaldo was also reportedly an option for PSG but City appear to be closing in on the deal
The latest developments come despite Max Allegri insisting Ronaldo would stay at Juventus
Ronaldo himself also looked to play down the speculation with a lengthy social media post
Referring to PSG signing free agents Messi, Sergio Ramos, Georginio Wijnaldum and Gianluigi Donnarumma, City’s director of football Txiki Begiristain said: ‘Maybe they have taken advantage of something because they were free, but the quality of the signings they have made is unbelievable.’
Liverpool landed Atletico Madrid — who knocked them out of the competition last year — old European adversaries AC Milan and FC Porto in Group B.
‘I laughed pretty loud because it is a tough group,’ said manager Jurgen Klopp.’But it’s the Champions League and you have to play the best teams in Europe.’
Chelsea are up against Juventus, Zenit St Petersburg and Malmo, but United appear to have the easiest route to the knockout stage.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have the opportunity to avenge last season’s Europa League final defeat by Villarreal while Atalanta and Young Boys are their other opponents in Group F.
Source: DailyMail Sports