Cristiano Ronaldo.

Cristiano Ronaldo explains why he joined Manchester United instead of two other elite clubs

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Football News

When Cristiano Ronaldo won his fifth Ballon d'Or this year, it only restarted the debate over whether he truly is the world's greatest.

CR7's latest accolade saw him equal Lionel Messi's tally, and it's now 10 years since it was won by any other player.

Football fans will never be able to come to a consensus over who's better, but one thing's for sure - it's certainly a positive reflection on La Liga.

Four of the Portuguese's Ballon d'Or wins have come since he arrived at Real Madrid in 2009.

At the time, his £80million transfer was a hammer blow to Manchester United fans, though few would resent him going now considering what he's achieved at the Bernabeu.

The Red Devils still got three Premier League titles and a Champions League out of him before his departure, while he also found the back of the net 84 times in 196 league games.

Things could have been very different, however, as he has now admitted to Alessandro Del Piero that he could have joined Juventus or Real as a 17-year-old, but opted to link up with Sir Alex Ferguson at the Theatre of Dreams instead.

"Many clubs were interested in me," he said, per the Mirror.

"But the key man as always was [agent] Jorge Mendes.

Ronaldo had options 

"He has always guided me in the right direction. Of course, I remember that he talked also about Juventus, and I was happy because they are an extraordinary club.

"He also talked about Real Madrid, Manchester United and many others. But the club that offered me the best conditions were United. It was a dream because as a kid I always wanted to play in the Premier League.

Manchester United v Arsenal - Premier League

"United gave me this opportunity and for that I have to thank Sir Alex Ferguson and obviously Jorge helped me to arrive there."

Nowadays, most supporters lament the influence of super-agents like Mendes and Mino Raiola, but on this occasion, it worked out rather nicely for United.

One has to wonder how the 32-year-old's career might have panned out had he not received Sir Alex's guidance, or if he had been at Juve at a time when they were relegated in 2006 amid Serie A's match-fixing scandal.

Is Ronaldo the best player in the world? Have your say in the comments. 

Real Madrid
Cristiano Ronaldo
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