The five-time Ballon D’or winner has been welcomed back to the city where he made his name after returning to Manchester United following twelve years away where he enjoyed spells at Real Madrid and Juventus
Cristiano Ronaldo has been welcomed back to Manchester in cheeky fashion by Man Utd after the Red Devils took the opportunity presented by his return to the club to troll local rivals Manchester City.
12 years ago, Carlos Tevez’s move from United to City was greeted with a now infamous billboard that displayed Tevez, arms outstretched on a sky blue background with the memorable caption ‘Welcome to Manchester.’
Over a decade later and United have got their own back after securing the signature of the former Real Madrid and Juventus superstar, reportedly from right under the noses of City who were leading the race for Ronaldo until a late hijack from the Portuguese star’s former side.
While United’s last minute move would have undoubtedly annoyed their ‘noisy neighbours’, the billboard will rub extra salt in the wounds.
It took just a matter of hours after United had announced the deal for the famous phrase to rear its head, an advert with the words ‘Welcome to Manchester’ appeared in Manchester Piccadilly train station in the city centre — but this time with Ronaldo celebrating a goal and a red background.
There have now been a number of other billboards erected around Manchester to welcome the the five-time Champions League winner home.
Since the Tevez billboard was first made public, City have enjoyed significantly more success than their rivals, winning five Premier League titles to United’s one, which came eight years ago.
City boss Pep Guardiola is currently aiming to secure his fourth league title in five seasons, but given the nature of United’s business this summer – the Red Devils could be pose their strongest threat.
Eamonn and James Clarke)
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have now added Ronaldo to their ranks that already boasted Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane – both acquired earlier on in the window.
The billboard remain in place for the next seven days and is the work of SportBible, who have used Ronaldo’s high-profile move as a chance to rile City fans.
Will Ronaldo inspire United to silverware this season? Have your say here.
Eamonn and James Clarke)
Ronaldo enjoyed great success during his first stint at United, winning three Premier League titles, one FA Cup and one Champions League but the stakes will be even higher for him to inspire his old side to their former glories.
United are without a trophy of any kind in four years, their most recent coming in the form of the 2017 Europa League, secured by Solskjaer’s predecessor Jose Mourinho.