Cristiano Ronaldo’s shock return to Manchester United has seen the club’s stock market value rocket by £212m at one point on Friday.
On Thursday, it looked inevitable that Ronaldo would ignore his previous loyalties and sign for Manchester City , which would consequently put an end to their search for a striker.
However, over the course of Friday, the tide turned and in a fast-moving deal, Ronaldo was announced as a United player for the second time in his career.
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The Portugal captain had spent the previous three campaigns at Juventus conquering the Serie A, he scored 81 goals in 97 league appearances during that time and helped his side win the title twice.
United will pay £20m for the 36-year-old, managing to pay a cut-price figure for the forward due to his contract in Italy running out next season anyway. He has now agreed to a two-year contract at Old Trafford.But it wasn’t just the United faithful that went wild after seeing the announcement that Ronaldo would return to the Theatre of Dreams after 12 years away, the stock market did too.
When Ronaldo was announced on United’s social channels, share prices in the club rose by an almighty 9 .8%.
This morning, United’s share prices opened at $17 .38 (£12 .62) but they soon soared to as high as $19 .09 (£13 .87), which means that the club’s overall market value rose by $293m (£212m).
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As many expected, the shares then fell slightly after the initial shock factor passed. However, it is still up by more than 6%.
Ronaldo joins United for the second time in his career after spending six years at the club from 2003 to 2009, joining from Sporting Lisbon for £12 .2m. At the time, that figure made him the most expensive teenager in world football.
Under the management of Sir Alex Ferguson, the versatile forward excelled. He scored 84 goals in 196 league appearances, helping the Red Devils to three Premier League titles, a victory in the FA Cup, three League Cup wins and the Champions League in 2007/08 .
In 2009, Ronaldo broke another transfer record. This time he became the most expensive footballer of all time as he moved to Real Madrid for £80m, it was there that he asserted himself as one of the best in the world and his battle for footballing superiority with Lionel Messi begun.
Ronaldo won two La Liga titles with Real, as well as adding another four Champions League winner’s medals to his trophy cabinet.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner will be linking up with his former teammate Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at United, who is now in the dugout rather than leading the line.
Before the move, the Norwegian boss spoke of how he would like Ronaldo to make an emotional return to United.
He said: “Cristiano is a legend of this club, the greatest player of all time if you ask me. I was fortunate enough to play with him. I coached him when I got my job. Let’s see what happens”.
The compliments were obviously enough to capture the interest of the striker as now he will be playing under him this season.
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