Real Madrid had publicly courted Ronaldo throughout the 2008-09 season and shattered the transfer record that summer by paying £80million to bring the Portuguese star to the Bernabeu.
The Spanish giant’s pursuit of Ronaldo had angered the then United boss Ferguson, who ruled out selling his prised asset to Madrid back in 2008, saying: ‘Do you think I would get into a contract with that mob. Jesus Christ, no chance. I wouldn’t sell them a virus.’
Real Madrid shattered the world transfer record to sign Cristiano Ronaldo back in 2009
Then Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson offered Ronaldo to Madrid’s rivals Barcelona
But Ronaldo ended up on opposite teams to Lionel Messi after opting to join Real Madrid
Madrid were on a mission to usurp Pep Guardiola’s all-conquering Barcelona side, who had romped home to the La Liga title in 2009, and had already recruited Xabi Alonso and Kaka before setting their sights on finally sealing Ronaldo’s signature.
But Ferguson went to extreme lengths to prevent Ronaldo from joining Madrid, even offering him to Barcelona, which would have seen him link-up with Lionel Messi.
According to Spanish newspaper AS, The United boss tried to steer Ronaldo towards Barcelona after resigning himself to losing his star player, but Ronaldo had already set his heart on signing for Madrid.
Ronaldo could have joined a dream attack with Messi, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thierry Henry
Barcelona’s line-up that season would have been extraordinary if Ronaldo had have signed with the Portugal sensation joining a dream attack alongside Thierry Henry, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Messi.
If Ferguson had his way, Barcelona could have brought an era of unprecedented success with those world-class stars up front.
Ronaldo rejected the chance though and enjoyed a prolific first season at Madrid, scoring 33 goals in all competitions, but could not stop Barcelona from winning successive La Liga titles.
The now Juventus star would go on to cement his place as a Madrid legend after scoring an astonishing 450 goals in 438 matches for the club during a trophy-laden nine years before leaving for Turin in 2018.
The Portugal ace enjoyed a prolific first campaign in Spain, scoring 33 goals in all competitions
But even Ronaldo could not stop Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona from winning successive La Ligas