Eyebrows were raised when Real Madrid smashed the world transfer record to sign Cristiano Ronaldo from Manchester United in 2009.
Although the Portuguese forward was already world-class by this point - indeed, he’d already won the first of his five Ballon d’Or awards - many people still felt £80 million was excessive.
Manchester United were satisfied with the amount of money they received, believing they could strengthen their squad. Various big-name players had been sold by Sir Alex Ferguson, yet United always recovered.
However, 10 years later and it’s fair to say that United were left short-changed by that £80 million transfer fee.
Ronaldo would go on to enjoy the best years of his career at the Bernabeu, netting an absurd 450 goals in 438 games for Los Blancos - legendary, almost unheard of, goalscoring stats.
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He won four Champions League titles, two La Liga titles, two Copas del Rey, three FIFA Club World Cups, two UEFA Super Cups and two Spanish Super Cups.
Cristiano also won a host of individual honours during his time with Madrid, including four Ballon d’Or awards and the European Golden Shoe on three occasions.
Despite his talent, nobody back in 2009 could have imagined that Ronaldo would achieve so much with Real Madrid.
He might even be the club’s greatest player of all time. His only real competition for that title, you could argue, is the iconic Alfredo Di Stefano.
It’s exactly 10 years to the day since Ronaldo was unveiled as a Real Madrid player in front of 80,000 fans at the Bernabeu.
It’s probably the most memorable player presentation we’ve ever seen.
Ronaldo was greeted like a rock star by the Madridistas, who knew they’d signed a player with the potential to help them close the gap on Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona.
Wearing the number nine shirt on his back, the famous white kit looked perfect on the Portuguese superstar.
He even pulled off a few skills during his presentation, much to the delight of the fans.
You can watch the presentation highlights here...
“Not only did you need a passport to get into the country, you needed a passport to get into the ground - and that was an experience in itself,” Juliette Ferrington wrote for BBC Sport on July 6, 2009.
“Fans couldn't get through the turnstiles quickly enough once the gates opened, and they tussled with each other, desperate to grab the best seats.
“‘Others clambered over the railings, running down the steps to make sure they were as close to proceedings as possible.
“It was more like a rock concert then player presentation, with big screens, flashing lights, and the tiers of the Bernabeu full to capacity.”
Little did Real Madrid know back then that Ronaldo would go on to exceed all of their expectations over the next nine seasons.
It’ll be a long time before Madrid have another player as effective as Ronaldo in their ranks.News Now - Sport News