Football fans looked at one stage like they would be treated to not one but two mouth-watering clashes between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in the Champions League
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have been denied a blockbuster meeting after it was announced the Portugal superstar would be joining Manchester United.
Ronaldo was being strongly linked with a move to rivals Manchester City on Thursday when the Champions League group stage draw was being made.
And as if there wasn’t enough fireworks going off, City were drawn in the same group as Paris Saint-Germain – Messi’s new club.
It looked at that stage if football fans across the world would be given the mouth watering match-up they were waiting for with Ronaldo and Messi set to face off in the group stages of this season’s Champions League.
However, that is no longer on the cards, with Ronaldo set to go back to United instead after they announced an agreement had been reached with Juventus.
That means that Ronaldo will be facing the trio of Villarreal, Atalanta and Young Boys in a rather kind draw that was thrown up for United, with the only possibility of facing Messi now lying in the knockout rounds.
Meanwhile, Messi and PSG face City, Bundesliga climbers RB Leipzig and Club Brugge.
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Cristiano Ronaldo to Man Utd
A club statement from United confirmed their agreement with Juventus for Ronaldo, also revealing the finer details of what was still to be done.
It read: “Manchester United is delighted to confirm that the club has reached agreement with Juventus for the transfer of Cristiano Ronaldo, subject to agreement of personal terms, visa and medical.
“Cristiano, a five-time Ballon d’Or winner, has so far won over 30 major trophies during his career, including five UEFA Champions League titles, four FIFA Club World Cups, seven league titles in England, Spain and Italy, and the European Championship for his native Portugal.
“In his first spell for Manchester United, he scored 118 goals in 292 games.
“Everyone at the club looks forward to welcoming Cristiano back to Manchester.”
Ronaldo has signed a two-year deal with the Red Devils after agreeing a fee in the region of €15 million, plus €8 million in add-ons with Juventus.
There has been speculation surrounding the 36-year-old’s future for much of the summer with him set to become a free agent at the end of this campaign.
Earlier this month, it appeared that he would remain with the Italian giants, labelling rumours of an imminent exit as “disrespectful”.
But after requesting to be on the bench for their Serie A opener, the wheels were set in motion for his departure.