Influential Portuguese captain Ronaldo has been in simply ridiculous form of late, with Sunday's hat-trick in the 5-0 demolition of woeful Athletic representing his third hat-trick in his last four appearances and his 13th, 14th and15th goals of the season so far in all competitions.
Despite his electric start to the new campaign under Carlo Ancelotti, however, transfer rumours - many of which appear based on a widely-held belief that Ronaldo was not particularly happy with Real's summer business - have continued to circulate suggesting that the 29-year-old could return to Old Trafford five years after leaving Manchester United in a then world-record deal.
- Rio Ferdinand exclusive: Cristiano Ronaldo special because of hard work
- Cristiano Ronaldo made John O'Shea dizzy before Manchester United move
- Real Madrid will block Manchester United move for Cristiano Ronaldo
Ronaldo has been understandably reluctant to fully address the gathering speculation, with brief claims that he is perfectly content at the Santiago Bernabeu tempered by the fact that he is clearly not afraid to re-affirm his admiration and fondness for Manchester United - the club with whom he signed from Sporting in 2003 and won three Premier League titles as well as the Champions League.
Despite their impressive strength in depth and the potentially extravagant fee they would receive for his services, Real Madrid - who reportedly pay their key asset a staggering £380,000-per-week - would obviously be horrified to lose Ronaldo given his reputation as one of the best footballers in the sport's history.
"Should Ronaldo go to Manchester United? Definitely not," Bale - another Real player who has been linked with an unlikely £90 million move back to the English football in recent days - said in an interview that was brought to our attention by the Daily Express.
"He's shown what a world-class player he is, year after year, scoring the goals. Obviously as players we wouldn't want to see Ronaldo leave. Of course we want to see him stay at Real Madrid."
Van Gaal intent
For Manchester United supporters, Ronaldo's return would surely be the biggest indication yet that the club are deadly serious about recovering from their recent blip following the arrival of Louis van Gaal as manager.
Summer deals for former Real playmaker Angel di Maria and revered striker Radamel Falcao proved that the Red Devils are still capable of luring the biggest names to Old Trafford despite last season's horrendous run under David Moyes that led to the club missing out on Champions League qualification for the first time in almost two decades.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms