Superstar Forward Could Have Gone To Barcelona Over United
By Vanessa Keller | January 22, 2013 10:25 PM EST
Barcelona's former president Joan Laporta claims that the club could have signed Cristiano Ronaldo before the star made his move to Manchester United, revealing the only reason he didn't go to Spain was that their budget was stretched to the limits at the time.
Ronaldo made the move to Old Trafford from Sporting CP in 2003, and the stint under Sir Alex Ferguson made him one of the biggest names in football, and the current record transfer fee holder as he made a £80m move to Real Madrid.
But Leporta says there were discussions for the forward to make the move to the Catalan giants who he now wreaks havoc against, with a cut price deal worked out that wasn't cheap enough to come into their budget.
"Mendes offered us Cristiano Ronaldo when he was still under contract with Sporting. We worked with Jorge quite a lot back then," he told Onda Cero.
"We could have got Ronaldo for a lower price than Manchester United eventually paid for him. However, we had just signed Ronaldinho, Ricardo Quaresma and Rafael Marquez, and we lacked the financial resources to make another signing."
Ronaldo's move to United was a big factor in the side's continued success throughout the 2000s, with the English giants amassing another Champions League win under Ferguson and continuing to challenge for titles.
But it could have been a very different story for both United, and Barcelona, if the then-17-year-old had in fact made the move to the Catalan city.
Leporta also revealed that he considered the prospect of signing Kaka, but decided to keep hold of their star signing Ronaldinho instead.
"We had dinner with Silvio Berlusconi and he proposed a player-exchange deal involving Kaka and Ronaldinho," he explained. "That was not an option for us, though, as Ronaldinho was a key player for us back then.
"It started out as a bit of a joke, but Berlusconi quickly turned serious. It's a real shame that Kaka has not really succeeded at Madrid. He was a fantastic player at AC Milan."
To report problems or to leave feedback about this article, e-mail:
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Taylor Swift Named Forbes' Second Highest Paid Country Musician [PHOTOS]
- Forever Lost: Indescribable Anguish for Malaysia Airlines MH17 Families, Remains of Some Victims May Never Be Found (PHOTOS)
- Lunch with the Gods: Pope Francis Eats with Vatican Workers in Cafeteria
- Global Aviation Accidents: UN to Form Safety Task Force, Gov'ts Should Share Intelligence Info to Avert Future Incidents on Flying Over Warzones (PHOTOS)
Join the Conversation
- Jeremy Lin, Chandler Parsons React To 'Role Players' Label By James Harden
- 2014 Commonwealth Games Medal Tally: Games are Through Day 5 and Australia Continues to Dominate Count; Day 5 Highlights
- Roger Federer Not That Good If Different Surfaces Were To Exist – Giles Simon
- Commonwealth Games 2014 Live Stream: Athletics, Swimming Schedule & Results
- Dan Bilzerian Opens Up to Howard Stern, Poker Pro Admits He Once Had Sex with 16 Women in 12 Days
- Google Nexus 6, 8 with Android L on Release Date Promises Killer Mobile Device Experience
- Killer Whales Gobble Japanese Whaling Crew
- iPhone 6 Release Date Relevance to iOS Newbies: Specs Meaning, Price Considerations
- 12-inch MacBook Apple Retina and 2014 MacBook Pro to Feature Liquid Sensors, Release in October
- Travel at Own Risk; Emirates, Qantas Differ on Flying over Iraq Warzone; Emirates Reroutes, Qantas Pushes On
- The Pirate Bay Releases ‘The Mobile Bay’: Mobile Torrent Download Made Easier but Remains Illegal