Over the past few days United have been linked with a move for Cristiano Ronaldo and United fans have no doubt been salivating over the prospect of the Portuguese winger returning to Old Trafford.
Thus it will have come as a disappointment that van Gaal has declared that Ronaldo is too expensive for the club to bring back. While this has come as a blow to those harbouring the belief that the club is going to be reunited with their former star, it's not necessarily a bad thing for United.
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Back in 2012 Ronaldo claimed that he was 'sad' at Real Madrid, which unsurprisingly sparked rumours that he could make an incredible return to United. However Ronaldo remained with the Madrid giants.
Reports emerged back in 2013 that Ronaldo had expressed his desire to return to Manchester. David Moyes was at the helm in the summer of that year, no move materialised. Instead the club finished a disastrous transfer window with Marouane Fellaini as their only signing.
Re-signing Ronaldo that summer would have been a huge boost for the club following Ferguson's retirement. It would have been the perfect start to life at Old Trafford for David Moyes. Alas, it did not happen and the rest, as they say, is history.
BUILDING FOR THE FUTURE
United is still very much a club in transition. The Red Devils are still in the process of finding their feet again following the departure of Ferguson. It's been a difficult two years but now the club is looking to build for the future.
Ronaldo would represent an outstanding quick fix for United. His goal scoring record speaks for itself, 313 goals in 300 games for Real. However he would be nothing more than a short-term solution to United's problems.
It would be a move totally out of sync with the other business United have done this summer. Fair enough they've purchased 30-year-old Bastian Schweinsteiger but the other signings they've made are all reasonably young. Players that could realistically play for United for years to come. Ronaldo simply wouldn't fit this bill.
There's a lot of promising young talent there, the likes of Adnan Januzaj, Andreas Pereira and James Wilson will all be looking to make breakthroughs. Thus in some respects it would be disappointing to see Ronaldo come in and deny them their first team opportunities. In truth, Ronaldo would be a step backwards for a team looking to build for the future.
If United are serious about investing in a "Galactico" this summer then it would make much more sense to invest in younger players who still fit the bill of world-class. Players such as Gareth Bale and Thomas Muller would be far more intelligent signings, as they are still young and yet to reach their peak.
Cristiano Ronaldo's time for returning has come and gone, two years ago he'd have been an excellent acquisition but now he's nothing more than a temporary measure. He'll forever be remembered as a club legend but a return to United is unlikely and it's probably for the best.
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