Manchester United’s notoriously frosty relationship with Real Madrid has taken a subtle twist. Whilst maybe not completely destroying the “I wouldn’t sell that lot a virus” mentality, Manchester United secretly hopes that the Los Merengues manage to negotiate the acquisition of Gareth Bale. Whilst no mean feat given the hard-line negotiating skills of Daniel Levy, that aside, he is also a man that is unlikely to turn down the reported £85m on the table, and Real Madrid are historically the most lavish spenders in the market.
Many within the United hierarchy believe it is the transfer of Gareth Bale to Real Madrid that will pave the way for the return of CR7. Is it possible that Manchester United have agreed in principle with Real Madrid to not enter a bidding war for Bale? Possible, but with the bidding power of Monaco and PSG that offer seems to hold little value unless Bale himself had expressed a strong desite to join United - and there is no indication of that. However, logic would dictate that United will have a much better chance with Bale, who is seen by many as the next best available player to CR7 alive, wearing the white of Madrid next season.
CR7 has maintained a relatively silent stance on his desire to return to United, being by no means as vocal as he was during his United days of his dream to be a Real Madrid player. However, a constant stream of people-in-the-know claiming he wants to return, and now Rio Ferdinand promising some surprises during his August testimonial, the rumour and speculation mills are ramping up as we approach football's equivalent to Harrods January sales on the 1st July.
This editor for one would like many love to see CR7 back at Old Trafford. Whilst cheaper and less effective solutions such as Gaitan and Di Maria await, there is a large void in United’s rumour mill for the attacking areas. Defensive additions are taking shape with Verela and the soon to sign Garay, and midfield is rife with speculation surrounding an almost signed Strootman, and the likes of Thiago and Fabregas mentioned daily. However, with the lack-lustre performances of Young, Nani and Valenica United need to bolster their attacking ranks. Zaha lies in waiting, however the possibility of another season on loan is likely, leaving United very short of wide-men irrespective of what formation (442 or 4231) is played.
So, there is strong circumstantial evidence that CR7 will return to Manchester United. A long line of people will be in support, not limited to Nike, Chevrolet,the Glazers who will reap the commercial benefits, the new CEO Ed Woodward and of course David Moyes looking to strike a major early blow across all competitions.